Former African soccer Champions, Zambia, Sunday afternoon failed to beat Lesotho in a match they need to win to cement their place at the top of World Cup qualification group.
But alas, Lesotho scored just a minute from full-time to give Lesotho a 1-1 draw with Zambia in Maseru after Collins Mbesuma opened the scoring entering the closing stages.
The failure to collect maximum points was a bitter blow for Zambia, who stay top of Group D with seven points, but Ghana can close the gap to just one point if they defeat Sudan in Kumasi later Sunday.
Zambia was awarded 3 points and 3-0 scoreline after the Court of Arbitration for Sports upheld FIFA’s decision to strip Sudan of a 2-0 win over Zambia for fielding an ineligible player in a 2014 World Cup qualifier played on 2nd June 2012. Zambia also defeated Ghana 1-0 on 9th June in Ndola.
After today’s match, Zambia faces Lesotho and Sudan at home on 8th and 15th June respectively before facing Ghana in Kumasi on 7th September.
Lesotho will face Ghana in June and then Sudan in September.EEthiopia snatched a dramatic 1-0 home victory over Botswana on Sunday to keep alive hopes of a first appearance at the World Cup in Brazil next year.
Substitute Getaneh Kebede, who replaced fellow-striker Adane Girma for the second half in Addis Ababa, snatched the lone goal two minutes from time in the high-altitude east African city.
Elsewhere in Africa, Ethiopia returned to the top of Group A with seven points, two more than overnight leaders South Africa, who overcame Central African Republic 2-0 in Cape Town on Saturday thanks to goals from Thabo Matlaba and Bernard Parker.
Tanzania scored three second-half goals to thrash four-time World Cup qualifiers Morocco 3-1 in Dar es Salaam and climb to within a point of Group C pacesetters Ivory Coast.
Thomas Ulimwengu broke the deadlock a minute after halftime and there was a brace for Mbwana Samata before Youssef El Arabi reduced arrears four minutes into stoppage time.
This humiliating loss, coupled with draws against Gambia and Ivory Coast, means Morocco are all but out of the running for Brazil, and the future of recently appointed coach Rachid Taoussi must be in doubt.
Mozambique and Guinea drew 0-0 in a dour Group G clash in Maputo, leaving leaders Egypt with the possibility of opening a five-point gap should they beat generally poor travellers Zimbabwe in Alexandria on Tuesday.