Burkina Faso scored a late equaliser through the centre-back Issoufou Dayo to earn a fortuitous 1-1 draw with Cameroon in Group A at the Africa Cup of Nations on Saturday.
Dayo touched home a header from close range in a goalmouth scramble from a free-kick in the 75th minute to ensure a share of the spoils after Cameroon had led at half-time. The captain Benjamin Moukandjo converted a free-kick in the 35th minute and Cameroon squandered two more gilt-edged chances after that as they failed to press home their advantage.
Moukandjo’s free-kick came after the Burkina Faso captain, Charles Kabore, had committed a needless challenge on the edge of his box. The Lorient striker stepped up and, with virtually no run-up, steered a superb effort high into the net.
Cameroon had a second chance with a breakaway on the stroke of half-time after Christian Bassogog beat the offside trap and found himself running clear on goal, but the Burkina Faso goalkeeper Hervé Koffi made a superb tackle to deny Cameroon a two-goal advantage.
After the break, Jacques Zoua’s thunderous strike was parried by Koffi straight into the path of Clinton Njie, who scuffed the rebound wide of the target. That opened the door for a Burkina Faso revival which saw Banou Diawara’s free-kick set up the equaliser.
Cameroon failed to clear a firmly struck free-kick that bounced around dangerously before Bakary Koné steered it goalward and Dayo came through to apply the finishing touch and claim a first international goal.
Earlier, the hosts Gabon were stunned by a last-minute equaliser as the tournament newcomers Guinea-Bissau held them to a 1-1 draw in the opening game.