By Gabriel Tan at the Jalan Besar Stadium
In an evenly-contested - and at times bad-tempered - clash, Jonathan Toto scored the only goal of the game in the 29th minute to hand his side an impressive win and avenge the 3-1 loss they suffered earlier this season.
And although it was the former Etoile man that grabbed the winner, it was a resolute second-half display from the Young Lions defence that ultimately saw them pick up all three points.
While they headed into the game with three wins in their last four league games, Harimau's hopes for victory were dealt a significant blow due to the absence of key trio Mahalli Jasuli, Fadhli Shas and Gary Robbat, who were all away on international duty.
And the lack of Fadhli's calming presence at the back was nearly exposed after just three minutes when Izham Tarmizi sent a clearance straight into Toto, who retrieved the ball near the touchline before playing it back into the box. Thankfully for the Malaysian side, Affize Faisal was alert to the danger and perfectly positioned himself to deal with the threat.
A minute later, the Harimau stand-in captain bailed his side out again when he hacked away a loose ball before Sirina Camara could pounce at the far post, after Izham had flapped at a corner from Sherif El-Masri.
Young Lions then created another good chance in the eighth minute when captain Hafiz Abu Sujad went on an enterprising run down the left before drilling a low cross into the box, only to see Toto opt to go for a fancy backheel and send it straight into the waiting arms of Izham.
However, the French striker made amends a minute before the half-hour mark when he gave his side the lead after beating Shahrul Saad in the air to meet another good delivery from El-Masri, before planting a header into the back of the net.
Three minutes later, Young Lions keeper Syazwan Buhari was extremely lucky to stay on the field when he received just a yellow for scything down D. Saarvindran on the edge of the area, after the Malaysian forward had raced clean through on goal.
Still, the hosts remained firmly in control of the game and could have doubled their lead in the 40th minute when Benjamin Kristofferson Lee took too long to get his shot away and saw it blocked by Fandi Othman, after he had been picked out by Hafiz following another driving run down the left.
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The game then took a controversial twist two minutes before the break when referee Ahmad A'Qashah, who had made a number of questionable calls already, sent Harimau boss Ong Kim Swee to the stands for no apparent reason.
But rather than be unsettled by their coach's dismissal, the Young Tigers came out for the second half looking the hungrier of the two sides and nearly found a way past the Young Lions backline shortly after when D. Saarvindran picked out Ahmad Hazwan with a perfectly-floated cross. However, Camara ensured Syazwan's goal was not threatened by weighing in with a vital touch just as his opponent was about to bring the ball under control.
And while they continued to pile on the pressure, the visitors just failed to find a way past a resilient Young Lions defence, who were being marshalled expertly by Sheikh Abdul Hadi.
Instead, it was the hosts who looked more likely to score from their blistering counterattacks, and Nazrul Nazari and El-Masri both wasted excellent chances to double their side's advantage; the former firing straight at Izham in a one-on-one situation after a shocking backpass from Irfan Fazali.
Affize, who had battled valiantly all evening long, then nearly found the equaliser in the 84th minute when he struck a blistering 35-yard effort that swerved in the air and nearly caught Syazwan out, before substitute Syahid Zaidon narrowly missed the top corner with a strike from the edge of the area, after legally nudging Camara out of the way.
In the end, Harimau were just unable to find a way past a resolute Young Lions, who ultimately held on for an impressive win which sees them climb over Gombak United into ninth place.
Courts Young Lions: Syazwan Buhari, Faritz Hameed, Sheikh Abdul Hadi, Sirina Camara, Hafiz Abu Sujad, Aqhari Abdullah, Zulfahmi Arifin (Shamil Sharif 70'), Benjamin Kristofferson Lee (Nazrul Nazari 63'), Faris Ramli (Shahfiq Ghani 14'), Sherif El-Masri, Jonathan Toto.
Harimau Muda: Izham Tarmizi, Azzizan Nordin, Syazwan Tajudin, Shahrul Saad, Nazirul Naim, Affize Faisal, Irfan Fazali (Syahid Zaidon 82'), Syahrul Azwari, D. Saarvindran (Ferris Danial 72'), Fandi Othman, Ahmad Hazwan.