• Cup Debutants Equatorial Guinea knock out favourites Senegal

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  • E. Guinea reached last eight after a 2-1 win over Senegal.(Photo courtesy CAF)E. Guinea reached last eight after a 2-1 win over Senegal.(Photo courtesy CAF)
Jan 26, 2012-

Co-hosts Equatorial Guinea reached the 2012 Orange Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals on Wednesday and eliminated Senegal with a shock 2-1 triumph at rain-soaked Estadio de Bata.

Midfielder Iban Randy Iyanga put the Nzalang Nacional ahead on 62 minutes, Moussa Sow equalised a minute from time and David Alvarez snatched the winner four minutes into stoppage time.

The result ensured the highly rated Senegalese become the first casualty at a tournament they were tagged amongst the favourites.

The co-hosts, who are debuting at the tournament, are also the first team to reach the last eight of the competition.

It was an improved performance from the Senegalese compared to their opener against Zambia last Saturday, but they faced in the Equatoguineans an equally formidable side.

Newcastle United new recruit Papiss Demba Cisse started for the first time at the tournament with Moussa Sow on the bench whilst Turkey-based Issiar Dia operated on the flanks.

The changes reflected in the performance of the team with Cisse, Demba Ba and Dame Ndoye coming close at breaking the deadlock. Senegal was the better side as they pressed the hosts to their half but failed to break through.

Two minutes past the hour mark, the Nzalang Nacional surprisingly took the lead through Iyanga who headed home from Alvarez a cross from the right.

Sow and captain Mamadou Niang came on as Senegal coach Amara Traore threw in all. But they had to wait till a minute from time before Sow silenced the host crowd with the equalizer from a goal mouth scramble.

Just when the Senegalese appeared to find comfort in the draw, Alvarez struck the winner in added-on time with a thunderbolt that beat Senegal goalie Coundoul Bouna.

The stadium erupted into ecstasy as the Nzalang Nacional booked their place into the last eight with the result and cut short the campaign of the Teranga Lions.

In the other match of the day Zambia came from behind twice to hold Libya to a 2-2 draw in their Group A clash on Wednesday at the Estadio de Bata.

The result gave both teams an equal chance of advancing to the next round of the competition. It was the third meeting between the two sides after facing off during the qualifying series.

The kickoff of the match was delayed for over an hour due to a downpour just after the warm up session. The match finally kicked off when the rain was done, but the soggy nature of the pitch marred the beauty of the game.

Libya will next play Senegal on January 29 in Bata whilst Zambia face co-hosts Equatorial Guinea in Malabo.