Fascinating clashes in battle for last eight

Massadio Haidara of Mali blocks the path of Angola's Geraldo in their Afcon group stage clash on Tuesday.
Massadio Haidara of Mali blocks the path of Angola's Geraldo in their Afcon group stage clash on Tuesday.
Image: Abdallah Dalsh / REUTERS

Cairo - Tunisia filled the final place in the Africa Cup of Nations last-16 draw on Tuesday after a tense finish to the group stage in Egypt.

Already-qualified Mali defeated Angola 1-0 in Ismailia through an Amadou Haidara thunderbolt to win Group E.

Tunisia, ranked second in Africa behind Senegal, could only draw 0-0 with debutants Mauritania in Suez but the point secured second place behind Mali.

Mali will face the Ivory Coast in the round of 16 while Tunisia meet Ghana, who are chasing a seventh consecutive top-four finish in Afcon.

Highlight of the round is the clash of defending champions Cameroon and Nigeria, who have won the competition eight times between them.

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Hosts Egypt, Algeria and Morocco, the three countries who finished first in groups with three-win records, all face opponents who came third. Morocco face Benin in Cairo tomorrow while Algeria tackle Guinea on Sunday. Egypt face off with Bafana on Saturday.

Fairytale qualifiers Madagascar stay in Alexandria for a showdown with DRC. Boosted by a Sadio Mane brace against Kenya, Senegal will face Uganda for quarterfinals place.

In Ismailia, Mali made eight changes from the team that drew against Tunisia, with captain Abdoulay Diaby and ace striker Moussa Marega among those on the bench.

There was only one goal during the first half, with Haidara putting the Malian Eagles ahead on 37 minutes.

Tunisia have been a major disappointment so far under French coach Alain Giresse, failing to win any of their three group matches. 

Last 16 fixtures

Tomorrow: Morocco v Benin, 6pm; Uganda v Senegal, 9pm

Saturday: Nigeria v Cameroon, 6pm; Egypt v South Africa, 9pm

Sunday: Madagascar v DR Congo, 6pm; Algeria v Guinea, 9pm

Monday: Mali v Ivory Coast, 6pm; Ghana v Tunisia, 9pm.

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