Honours were even between Malaysia and Singapore after their 2021 SEA Games men's football encounter finished 2-2 at the Thien Truong Stadium on Saturday.

Brad Maloney's boys had a dream start when Luqman Hakim Shamsudin benefitted from a slack defending from Singapore's backline and opened the scoring in the fourth minute.

However, the lead only lasted three minutes as Shah Shahiran blasted the ball from outside the box beyond goalkeeper Azri Ghani's reach and into the back of the net.

Malaysia had a lion's share of goal-scoring chances especially through Luqman Hakim but poor finishing and decision-making ensured the score was 1-1 at half-time.

In the second half, the young Tigers continued to apply the pressure on Singapore but it was the boys in red who got on the scoresheet against the run of play.

A Singapore free-kick into the box flew past everyone but Harhys Rizal Gareth Stewart, who had his first effort blocked by the Malaysia goalkeeper but made sure to convert the rebound in the 78th minute.

With time running out, Faiz Amer Runnizar came to the country's rescue as he headed in the final goal of the night.

Thanks to the result, Malaysia currently sit at the top of Group B with seven points from three matches and Singapore, who completed all their four group matches, are in second with five points.

This means if either Thailand or Cambodia win their group encounter later tonight, Malaysia's qualification to the knockout stage would be secured.

If it finishes in a draw, Malaysia just need to avoid a defeat against Cambodia in their final group match on Monday.