No one ever thought that Indonesia would be able to advance to the finals of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2016, as well as be able to beat the tournament's favorite, Thailand. The final first leg was held in the Pakansari Stadium, Cibinong, Bogor, which was Team Garuda's temporary home. their performance on Wednesday seemed to reverse all the predictions of many people. A 2-1 win over Thailand made every Indonesian happy and optimistic that Team Garuda can be a champion this year.

The match started with a barrage of pressure from Thailand. indonesia looked troubled coping with strategies implemented by Thailand.

The first half practically belonged to Thailand especially after the team coached by Kiatisuk Senamuang was able to score the first goal in the 33rd minute through a header from their scoring machine, Teerasil Dangda.

Rizky Pora and Hansamu Pranata, the game changer

But, everything changed in the second half. the equalizing goal scored by mercurial winger Rizky Pora in the 65th minute made Team Garuda rise up and begin to play quick football combined with fast counterattacks. Thailand was shocked since in just five minutes after the first goal, Indonesia scored the second and winning goal through a header from the 21-year-old deadly central defender, Hansamu Yama Pranata. This was also his second goal in three matches after after being played by coach Alfred Riedl as a substitute for regular central defenders, Fachrudin Aryanto and Yanto Basna, who are banned from playing in the semifinal first leg against Vietnam.

Indonesian supporters who packed the 30,000 capacity stadium went wild and the excitement exploded after the final whistle, not only in the stadium but also in all the houses in Indonesia and across social media. No less than President of Indonesia Joko Widodo expressed his joy come through his personal account on twitter.

"Congratulations ...

congratulations ... congratulations ... to the Indonesian national team," he said from his hotel room in Teheran, Iran.

"We did not play well in the first half against the best team in ASEAN, but the equalizing goal change the pace of the match.

Sometimes in football, we needed a goal like this and we need these changes in front of the fantastic supporters in Pakansari Stadium," said Austrian born Alfred Riedl, Indonesia National Team's head coach.

Comeback from the 0-1 defeat was not the first experienced by Indonesia in the AFF Suzuki Cup 2016. In the last match of the group stage against Singapore, Indonesia also lost 0-1 before back to lead through goals form Andik Vermansyah and Stefano Lilipaly.

"It was a tough match, because they led in the first half. I gave my goal to all Indonesian people," said winger Rizky Pora.

Second leg will be played at the Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok on Saturday. Indonesia needs only draw with any score to be the champion of AFF Suzuki Cup 2016.