11 September 2017 01:03
After the slow start to day one, Sunday's batch of matches recorded six goals with Benin and Guinea going through to the next round of the 2017 WAFU Cup of Nations.
Coincidentally, both games played in Cape Coast recorded three goals each, a sharp contrast to what was witnessed on the opening day where host Ghana were stretched to the limit by Gambia whilst Senegal edged Liberia on penalties.
In the first game, Idrissa Halidou handed Niger a 2-1 win over Burkina Faso in a low tempo clash which saw both sides squandering the many chances that came their way.
The tournament saw its first goal from open play in the 33rd minute when Boubacar Hainikoye Soumana showed great strength to fight off a defender and latch onto a through ball before duly lobbing the onrushing goalkeeper, 1-0.
Despite taking the lead, Niger suffered a set-back in the 40th minute when Hutmanu Ganiyu left the field injured and was replaced by Abdoul Moumouni Boubacar, ending the first half 1-0 in their favour.
Burkina Faso came out firing at the start of the second half and made their pressure tell on the hour mark when substitute Hassamy Sansan Dah turned home a low right-wing cross from Adama Barro at close range to level matters.
Niger, though, quickly hit back and took the lead for the second time in the 71st minute when Halidou slipped in behind the Burkina Faso defence and slotted the ball between the legs of the advancing goalkeeper, 2-1, an action that later turned out to be the match winner.
The second game of the day saw familiar foes Guinea and Guinea Bissau locking horns. The highly entertaining game which saw end to end stuff from both teams, sprung to life in the 15th minute when Gilson Correia opened the scoring to give Guinea Bissau the lead.
Guinea was awarded a penalty in the 31st minute and Keita Sekou scored from the spot to restore parity. Abdoulaye Camara scored for Guinea with four minutes to end the first half.
Mali take on Mauritania in the first game at 3:00pm whilst Nigeria take on Sierra Leone at 6:00pm at the same venue, Cape Coast stadium.
Man Of The Match:
Niger 2-1 Burkina Faso: Soumana Boubacar (Niger)
Guinea 2-1 Guinea Bissau (Aminata Conde) (Guinea)