Lions beat Cambodia 4-0, ahead of Tuesday's meeting with Japan
Lions whip Cambodia in opener for timely boost before clash with Blue Samurai
(Khairul Amri 9, Safuwan Baharudin 21, 36, Fazrul Nawaz 55)
Singapore started their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign in dominant fashion as they recorded a 4-0 win over Cambodia in Group E.
The Lions were never in any real danger at the Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh after Khairul Amri's opener and a Safuwan Baharudin brace handed them a healthy first-half lead, before Fazrul Nawaz rounded off the scoring with a poacher's strike after the break.
The big test will come next Tuesday when they visit the Saitama Stadium to take on Asian giants Japan.
Singapore coach Bernd Stange was satisfied with the commanding win to open their World Cup qualifiers.
"I think we completely deserved the 4-0 result," the German said.
"We dominated the match from the first minute to the last minute and there are no doubts we were the better team.
"We now have a difficult task in four days against Japan, and then another away game against Syria (in September).
"It's a very tough start to the qualifiers and that's why it's important we took the points tonight."
The Lions got off to a perfect start when they took the lead after nine minutes, Amri playing a lovely one-two with Hariss Harun to break free before finishing past Sou Yaty.
With talismanic skipper Shahril Ishak absent from the starting line-up, Amri was expected to take the responsibility of getting his side going in the attacking third.
He continued to do just that in the 21st minute when he played a neat lay-off to the edge of the box for Safuwan, who proceeded to blast a shot into the top corner for his side's second.
The contest was effectively over six minutes after the half-hour mark when Safuwan struck again, towering above his opponent to glance home a pinpoint Shaiful Esah free-kick.
The visitors added a fourth in the 55th minute when Fazrul reacted quickest to Hariss' flick-on header and stabbed a shot past Yaty to cap off a fine evening for the Singaporeans.
The night also had added significance when Shahril came on for Amri with 10 minutes remaining to become the outright most-capped player in Singapore's history, surpassing Daniel Bennett with his 124th international appearance.
It remains to be seen if Shahril will have involvement against the Blue Samurai next week, although Stange has called for patience with the Johor Darul Ta'zim II forward.
"Unfortunately, Shahril has suffered many injuries since last December," he added. "He's not yet at his best, but he's very important for our team and he has to get back to where he was before, but it will take a while."
''To become Singapore's most capped player in the year that the country celebrates its 50th birthday means a lot to me. I would like to thank all my teammates, the FAS, the fans and my wife and daughter.''
— Shahril Ishak on becoming the most capped Singapore player