AFRICAN ROOKIES HILAL INTO CAF CUP LAST EIGHT

Al Hilal Obeid of Sudan reached the CAF Confederation Cup quarter-finals at the first attempt Saturday by winning 2-0 at home against Recreativo Libolo of Angola.

Both goals in the Group C matchday 5 clash came from penalties with Mohamed Tahir converting midway through the first half and Ivorian Cheick Moukoro soon after half-time.

Libolo had giant France-born striker Mamadou Diawara sent off just before half-time in Obeid, a city 350 kilometres west of the capital, Khartoum.

Victory gave Hilal an uncatchable four-point lead over third-place Libolo with one round to play in a group completed by Zesco United of Zambia and Smouha of Egypt.

Zesco recovered from a matchday 4 mauling by Libolo in Angola to draw 1-1 with Smouha in ancient Mediterranean city Alexandria.

The Zambian outfit went ahead six minutes from time when a shot from Kenyan Jesse Were was deflected into his net by defender Yasser Ibrahim.

Smouha equalised one minute into stoppage time when Burkinabe Banou Diawara converted a penalty.

Hilal have 10 points, leaving Zesco (seven), Libolo (six) and Smouha (five) to fight for the other quarter-finals place.

Mouloudia Alger of Algeria are also through to the last-eight stage of the secondary African club competition after a 2-0 home win over Platinum Stars of South Africa on Friday.

Captain Abderahmane Hachoud scored from a 12th-minute penalty and a superb half-volley by Hichem Nekkache in stoppage time sealed victory.

Record three-time CAF Confederation Cup winners CS Sfaxien of Tunisia or Mbabane Swallows of Swaziland, who meet Sunday in Lobamba, will be the other Group B qualifiers.

Former African champions Mouloudia have 11 points, Sfaxien seven, Swallows four and Platinum two.

A pattern of draws between the three Group D clubs challenging for qualification continued in Conakry with a 0-0 stalemate between Horoya of Guinea and SuperSport United of South Africa.

All five matches involving those clubs and title-holders TP Mazembe of the Democratic Republic of Congo have been drawn.

SuperSport had a late let-off when the referee awarded Horoya a penalty only to change his mind when the South Africans appealed for offside and a dive by Ocansey Mandela.

Horoya lead with nine points, SuperSport have seven and Mazembe six ahead of an away fixture against pointless Mounana of Gabon in Libreville Sunday.

Source: Confederation Africaine de Football

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