By FOX Sports staff
Entering the game at the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang Stadium trailing 1-0 from the first leg, the Armed Forces looked a side determined to force a comeback from the opening whistle.
And in the 22nd minute, they duly opened the scoring when Marlon Alex James' right-wing cross was inadvertenly turned towards his own goal by Hariss Harun, with the ball crossing the line despite LIONSXII goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud's best efforts to keep it out.
Ten minutes, it was 2-0 as James raced onto Hairuddin Omar's through-ball and burst past Safuwan Baharudin before slotting home, although the aggregate score was levelled four minutes after the break when Hafiz Abu Sujad netted a priceless away goal for the visitors.
However, ATM edged ahead once more 15 minutes from time when James scored with a stunning freekick, before the 36-year-old completed his hat-trick in the 82nd minute to seal ATM's progress to the semi-finals.
In Friday's other semi-final, Pahang beat PKNS FC 2-1 at the Shah Alam Stadium to progress from their last-eight tie with a 5-3 aggregate victory.
The result was never in doubt once Tok Gajah, leading 3-2 from the first leg, edged ahead through a Matias Conti penalty in the 28th minute, before doubling their tally on the hour mark after Azamuddin Akil struck.
Khairu Azrin Khazali did pull one back for PKNS five minutes later but it proved to be little more than a mere consolation as the visitors held on for the win.
Friday's Malaysia Cup Quarter-final Results
ATM 4-1 LIONSXII (4-2 on agg.)
PKNS FC 1-2 Pahang (3-5 on agg.)
Image courtesy of ATM FA