India has advanced to the final of the SAFF Championship after defeating Lebanon on penalties. The Blue Tigers will now meet Kuwait in the tournament final.

India dominated throughout the 120 minutes but was unable to land the decisive punch against a tenacious Lebanon team. In the 16th minute, a Jeakson Singh ball for Sahal Samad was intercepted by Lebanese midfielder Ali Dhanini at the last second to prevent an assured score.

However, it wasn't all plain sailing for India in the first half, as goalkeeper Gurpreet Sandhu was called upon on many occasions to deny Lebanon. Sandhu denied Hassan Maatouk twice from set pieces to keep the scores level.

Sandhu came to India's rescue once more in the 61st minute, preventing Karim Darwich from scoring with a headed attempt from a whipped cross from Mahdri Zein. In the second half, Lebanon enjoyed the bulk of the chances, although India came the closest when defender Anwar Ali headed a corner towards the goal, but Mehdi Khalil in goal deflected it off the crossbar.

The game went to extra time after 90 minutes of deadlock. Sunil Chhetri, India's captain, came close to scoring twice in extra time, first having his shot stopped in the 94th minute and then blasting a guilt-edged opportunity off-target two minutes later. 

Udanta Singh and Mahesh Singh came close in the second half of extra time, but neither side had clear-cut chances. The semi-final went to penalty shootouts after the game ended 0-0 after 120 minutes of play.

India will meet Kuwait in SAFF Championship Final SAFF Championship

Chhetri converted India's first penalty, while Matook of Lebanon missed his, giving India a 1-0 lead. Anwar Ali converted his penalty kick, as did Walid Shour of Lebanon, to make the score 2-1. Then, to make it 3-2, both Mahesh Singh and Mohamad Sadek scored. Lebanon lost the shootout 4-2, as Udanta made no mistake from the spot and Khalil Bader missed.

After defeating Bangladesh 1-0 in the second semi-final, India will now meet Kuwait in the final.