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CHAN 2014: Gabon, DR Congo Take Last Quarter-final Places 23/01/2014 09:00:00.

Burundi's goalkeeper, Arthur Arakaza of Burundi saves Makusu Mundele's penalty but he could do nothing when RD Congo scored the other two goals that qualified them to the last eight stgage

Former champions Democratic Republic of Congo came from behind to book a place in the quarter-finals of the African Nations Championship in South Africa with Group D toppers Gabon following a 2-1 Group D victory over Burundi that also eliminated the losers from the competition. Gabon won the group at the end of a 4-2 win over Mauritania.

At the Peter Mokaba stadium in Polokwane on Wednesday evening, DR Congo, CHAN winners in the Ivory Coast in 2009 finished second in their group behind Gabon and will now face Group C winners Ghana in the last eight in a repeat of that final four years ago.

DRC who started the night in third place with three points soon found themselves on the back foot after Burundi captain Ndikumana Selemani thrust his team into the lead after 14 minutes following a neat lay-up from fellow striker Abdoul Fiston.

The Congolese, who had earlier had a goal disallowed for an infringement and also struck the cross bar from a free-kick eventually got it right to first level and then take the lead through when double scorer Jean-Marc Makusu Mundele in the 24th and 37th minutes.

After seeing his fifth minute goal disallowed for an infringement, it seemed to get worse for Mundele when 18-year-old Burundi goalkeeper Arthur Nakaza saved his 18th minute penalty.

Nakaza however, had no answers to Mundele's double strike that ensured it was DRC who rose into second place while Burundi - group leaders at the start of last night's matches - slipped into third with four points.

In the end the Congolese summoned all their experience to get the win they badly needed and take their points tally to six while Gabon finished tops with seven.

Nine goals were scored in the last of the group games with the Central African derby in Polokwane also full of end to end action as Burundi threatened to eliminate their more seasoned opponents. In the end, Gabon won 4-2 to top the group after coming from behind to beat Mauritania 4-2 at Free State stadium in Mangaung.

Two headed goals from Duval Filet Nzembi and Edmond Mouele, a late strike from substitute Bonaventure Sokambi Taty and a late penalty Taty cancelled out a brace from Mauritania's Moulaye Ahmed Khalil.

The lively Khalil opened the scoring after four minutes when he ran onto a through ball and tacked it away expertly beyond the Gabonese goalkeeper Yves Bitseki Moto.

With 85 minutes on the clock and for the second time in as many games debutants Mauritania looked like have earned their first win of the Championship only for two late goals from more experienced Gabonese to deny them a hard fought win.

Mauritania will certainly rue their luck after matching Gabon for long periods of the match and just like in their last match against Burundi they were within minutes of a win but end of match fatigue and lack of concentration cost them again.

In the quarter-finals on Sunday, Gabon will meet Group C runners up Libya, while DR Congo take on Ghana

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Publication:The Tripoli Post (Tripoli, Libya)
Geographic Code:6GABO
Date:Jan 23, 2014
Words:552
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