In just within the first eight minutes of the proceedings, Oman were able to get themselves ahead. A dangerous set piece called Cardiff City goalkeeper Neil Etheridge into action as he cleared the ball. But the rebound found Raed Saleh, who was at the right place and time as he unleashed an unstoppable shot for the breakthrough.
In the first quarter of an hour, Oman proved to be more threatening on the counter-attack and set-pieces despite the Azkals getting a slight advantage in possession.
Around the 26 the minute of the match, Neil Etheridge produced a top-class save to thwart a great chance by Oman’s Jameel Al Yahmadi off a corner kick.
Two minutes before the half hour mark, Mohsin Al Khaldi continued to add another chance for the Middle Eastern squad as he unleashed a driven attempt from outside the box, but Etheridge was able to gather the ball comfortably.
In the 32nd minute, came the best chance yet for the Azkals as Manny Ott fired inside the penalty box off a one-two but his low shot went straight to the opposing keeper, Ali Al Habsi.
Four minutes later and an equaliser did arrive for the Southeast Asians as a set piece by Manny Ott produced enough threat and precision to track Javier Patino. But although Oman’s Khalid Al Hajri was able to marginally beat the Buriram United striker in making contact with the ball, his attempted clearance came to naught as his header found the back of his own net.
Shortly after, an early substitution for the Azkals was executed as midfielder Kevin Ingreso seemed to have suffered a knock and cannot continue at full strength. He was replaced by IFK Mariehamn’s Amin Nazari.
It became a nervy end to the first half for the Filipinos as Oman mounted up some threatening plays. Eventually, Qatari referee Khamis Al Marri signalled the end of the half with both squads on equal footing.