In Summary
  • It is 37 years since the Black Stars won the last of four Cup of Nations titles while the lone Bafana Bafana triumph came 23 years ago.
  • Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey thrilled a capacity crowd by scoring nine minutes before half-time and Kudus celebrated his first cap by netting on 80 minutes.

JOHANNESBURG

Kenya held Mohamed Salah-less Egypt 1-1 and defending champions Algeria buried Zambia under a five-goal avalanche on Thursday as 2021 Africa Cup of Nations match day one qualifying continued.

Debutant Mohammed Kudus clinched victory for Ghana over South Africa while Mali and Guinea ended 2-2 after four goals in 19 minutes.

In other matches, Comoros upset Togo, a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang-inspired Gabon held the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mozambique were too strong for Rwanda.

Even without injured Liverpool goal poacher Salah, Egypt were expected to overcome traditional poor travellers Kenya at the vast 87,000-capacity Borg el Arab Stadium near Alexandria.

But after starting anxiously with every player behind the ball, Kenya had chances to score before they gifted Egypt the lead three minutes before half-time in the Group G clash.

A back pass from Erick Ouma in the centre circle to goalkeeper Ian Otieno was too weak and Mahmoud Kahraba took advantage to tap into the net.

Kenya became increasingly assertive in the second half and deservedly levelled on 67 minutes through a goal that stemmed from another careless back pass.

Michael Olunga was the beneficiary this time, firing into the corner of the net after an attempt by a teammate was blocked.

Algeria, who edged Senegal 1-0 in July to win the Cup of Nations a second time, finished strongly to humiliate 2012 champions Zambia 5-0 in Blida.

The surprisingly easy Group H victory extended the unbeaten run of the Desert Foxes to 17 matches since losing away to Benin last October.

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