African Cup : Egypt, Cameroon enter semis

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{image-african nations cup_05022008.jpg}Accra, Feb 5: Defending champion Egypt and Cameroon progressed into the semifinals of the Africa Nations Cup on Monday, following the host Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire.

Egypt edged Angola 2-1 and Cameroon upset Tunisia 3-2 in the quartefinals. Egypt's opening goal was from Hosny Abd Rabou's penalty in the 22nd minute. However, talented striker Manucho of Angola leveled the score with a long-distance shot just one minute later. In the 38th minute, Egypt surprisingly got the lead when a right-wing cross from Ahmed Fathi hit the chest of Amr Zaki between the posts and bounced into the net. That is Zaki's second goal in the continental tournament.

Angola has been in ascendancy over the past few years. It is the first time for the South African team to move into the knockout stage of the Africa Nations Cup. Manucho's magic strike proves that Angola has a bright future in soccer.

In the following match between Cameroon and Tunisia, Stephane Mbia's header and Geremi Njitap's free-kick in the first 30 minutes made the semifinal within the reach of The Indomitable Lions.

Chaouki Ben Saada of Tunisia cut the deficit in the 35th minute with a brilliant free-kick over the wall. His teammate Yacine Chikhaoui brought the hope back to Tunisia with a late score with around ten minutes remaining and dragged the match into extra time.

As Tunisia did not concentrate in the extra time, Mbia sent The Indomitable Lions into the semifinals with his second goal.
Egypt will play against Cote d'Ivoire on Thursday in Kumasi while Ghana will face Cameroon on the same day in Accra.

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