In Accra, Ghana
Ivory Coast 1 Nigeria 0
Egypt v Cameroon 8pm
Sudan v Zambia 10.30pm
A stunning individual effort from Chelsea striker Salomon Kalou handed red-hot favourites Ivory Coast a 1-0 win over Nigeria last night.
The Elephants got the flying start to the tournament they wished for after Kalout beat three men in the 66th minute to confidently slot past Austin Ejide in goal.
Nigeria fielded virtually the same team that lost 2-1 to Uganda in June last year, and the Super Eagles were guilty of profligacy and over-elaboration.
Taye Taiwo rattled the crossbar, and Obafemi Martins squandered a gilt-edged chance in the second-halfâ€” and Kalou broke through emphatically to make them pay.
A first-half hat-trick from Soufiane Alloudi ensured an easy 5-1 win for Morocco over Namibia in their African Nations Cup Group A match in Accra yesterday.
One of the billboards erected to promote the 2008 Nations Cup tournament shows an image of Samuel Etoâ€™o baring his teeth.
Etoâ€™o has the best smile to urge kids to brush and take care of their dental hygiene. Yet hours to Cameroonâ€™s first fixture against champions Egypt, at the teamâ€™s camp in Kumasi, the smile has vanished. He is instead determined to wipe the smiles from the faces of everyone connected with Egypt.
Etoâ€™oâ€™s teammate Geremi Njitap warned: â€˜We have come to this tournament as underdogs. A lot of people are talking about Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Ghana winning the tournament. We are going to surprise many people.â€™