Kuala Lumpur: Decisive finishing was the difference at a sold-out Bukit Jalil Stadium as Malaysia beat Myanmar 3-0 to book a spot in the semi-finals at the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup.

Myanmar entered the do-or-die Group A clash knowing that a draw would be enough to see them progress from Group A at this year’s tournament.

But pre-game, the Asian Lions' captain and goalkeeper Kyaw Zin Htet insisted home ground advantage meant all the pressure was on Malaysia.

Played in front of a raucous crowd at the imposing Bukit Jalil Stadium, the home team made the stronger of starts knowing only a win would do, charging forward on successive occasions before forcing repeated corners in the opening exchanges of the match.

On 14 minutes, Zaquan Adha’s penalty appeals were waved away by experienced referee Alireza Faghnai, much to the disappointment of the strong home crowd.

11 minutes later, Adha went agonisingly close to opening the scoring, with his curing cross just outside the box landing on top of the net with the goalkeeper seemingly beaten.

But in the 26th minute, Malaysia found their opener with a well-worked move. After Mohamadou Sumareh’s cross founded Mohamed Saymer just metres out, his shot hit the bar before Norshahrul Idlan tapped home from close range much to the delight of the crowd in Kuala Lumpur.

Just before the half time whistle, Myanmar will still be wondering how they didn’t equalise after Aung Thu was left free in the box, only for his tame shot to be saved by Malaysia keeper Mohd Farizal.

And it got worse for Myanmar just seconds before half time, with referee Faghnai left with no choice but to award a penalty to Malaysia after Kyaw Soe Moe fouled Muhamad Safawi. Zaquan Adha duly stepped up to convert the spot kick to give his side a two-goal buffer at half time.

As has been the case throughout much of the competition, Myanmar goalkeeper Kyaw Zin Htet has led from the front and that was evident once more in the 66th minute, making multiple saves within a matter of seconds to deny Mohamadou Sumareh adding a third goal for the hosts.

But the third goal did come just two minutes before the end of regulation time, as Kyaw Soe Moe’s attempted clearance for Myanmar ricocheted into Zaquan Adha and fortuitously landed in the net.

Malaysia can now look forward to an AFF Suzuki Cup semi-final, where they’ll be looking to return to the final for the first time since 2014.