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Lions roar

By Vision Reporter

Added 5th February 2002 03:00 AM

THE Indomitable Lions of Cameroon will take on hosts Mali in the Nations Cup semifinals on Thursday.

By Phillip Corry and AFP Cameroon 1 Egypt 0 THE Indomitable Lions of Cameroon will take on hosts Mali in the Nations Cup semifinals on Thursday. The defending champions, who have not conceded a goal in 360 minutes of Nations Cup action, brushed aside Egypt last night. African footballer of the year Patrick Mboma went top of the leading scorers’ chart at three with the winner — a backhead into the net from a corner kick. Egyptian custodian Essam El Hadary was caught wondering in his territory at Babemba Traore Stadium in Sikasso. It was a sorry exit for four-time champions Egypt, whose strategy of defending in depth and looking for chances on the counter-attack made for a lacklustre encounter. The other semifinal will be between Nigeria and either Senegal or DRC. r Nigeria won through to the semi-finals Sunday after a late strike by midfielder Garba Lawal. An assured Nigeria notched up their third 1-0 victory at the finals thanks to a superb long-range strike from midfielder Garba Lawal with just 10 minutes left of a hard-fought but entertaining tussle. The Dutch-based player met a weak Ghana clearance with a left-foot volley from 30 metres to win the tie with possibly the best goal of the tournament — just as the game appeared to be heading for extra time. “I saw the goal coming. I tried to hit the ball on target and I was lucky,” said Lawal, who had gone close with a clutch of long-range shots in the previous match against Liberia. The Super Eagles lost the 2000 final at home in Lagos after a controversial penalty shoot-out against Cameroon and will be hoping for revenge this time round. After the game, coach Shaibu Amodu braved a barrage of questions from a hostile Nigerian press demanding more goals from the star-studded national side. “It doesn’t matter if we win 10-0 or 1-0, we’re in the semi-finals. Every team we play against puts nine men behind the ball,” Amodu said. Leading goalscorers 3 - Patrick Mboma (Cameroon). 2 - Hazem Imam (Egypt), Isaac Boakye (Ghana), Bassala Toure (Mali) Hichem Zerouali (Morocco), Julius Aghahowa (Nigeria). ends

Lions roar

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