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Tuzla on top after striking late

Tuzla Canton AMA 2-0 Eastern Region AMA Late goals from Marijan Gajčević and Admir Hanić gave victory to the Bosnia-Herzegovnian team in Group A.

Bosnia-Herzegovina's Tuzla Canton AMA lead UEFA Regions' Cup Group A thanks to late Marijan Gajčević and Admir Hanić goals against Eastern Region AMA of Northern Ireland.

Late drama
The game was level with five minutes left but Gajčević's looping effort and Hanić's breakaway tap-in took Tuzla one point ahead of Eastern Region. If Tuzla succeed here again when they play Basse-Normandie AMA on Sunday they go through, while the Northern Irish will aim for victory against Bulgarian hosts South-East Region AMA in Sliven and hope for a favour elsewhere.

Tomelty pace
Captain Liam Bradley returned to the Eastern Region midfield from suspension while the speedy James Tomelty was preferred up front to Mark Craig and his pace certainly worried Tuzla early on. At the other end, the tricky Gajčević was a threat from midfield, while on 15 minutes Semir Aljukić touched on for Mersudin Ahmetović but the lone striker could not beat Northern Irish goalkeeper Ryan Brown, who was also equal to a strong Nedim Huseinbašić effort from distance. Emir Muratović, who had replaced the injured Šefik Imamović in the Tuzla goal at half-time in Wednesday's 1-1 draw with South-East Region and kept his place today, got down well to save a low header from Andrew Forsyth. Brown, meanwhile, made a fine diving stop from Muratović.

Muratović saves
Ahmetović was withdrawn for Ramiz Alibašić after the interval, yet it was an Eastern Region player who had the first chance of the half with Daniel Kitson striking at Muratović. Admir Cehajić was soon brought on and fed Gajčević, who shot wide. Aljukić came mighty close with a whipped-in attempt with 20 minutes remaining, while Muratović tipped over Tomelty's free-kick and then repeated the trick from Gerald Boyle's header. Then the goal came out of the blue, a long-range Gajčević shot that deceived Brown and dipped below his crossbar. Finally, Cehajić strolled clear on the right with Eastern Region committed to attack and fed fellow substitute Hanić for his second goal of the finals to seal the points.