Meanwhile 2019 Nations Cup winners Algeria made a solid start in Group F with a 2-0 win over Uganda in Oran.
Farouk Miya missed the chance to equalise from the penalty spot soon after Villarreal defender Aissa Mandi had put the Desert Foxes ahead in the 28th minute, and Youcef Belaili netted the second with 10 minutes remaining.
Earlier Niger and Tanzania had drawn 1-1 in a ‘home’ game for the former in Cotonou, Benin, with Daniel Sosah sweeping home to cancel out George Mpole’s first-minute headed opener for Tanzania.
Both sides hit the woodwork in search of a winner, but had to settle for a draw and trail Algeria by two points as a result.
Niger and The Gambia are among several nations who are having to use neutral countries for home qualifiers as they do not have stadia fit for international football.
Abdou wins opener with Mauritania
Mauritania were another side with a new manager to record an opening victory, with former Comoros boss Amir Abdou seeing his new side beat Sudan 3-0 at home in Group I.
Ex-Fulham forward Aboubakar Kamara scored two goals in the space of four first-half minutes and Abdallahi Mahmoud added the third 13 minutes from time in Nouakchott.
Gabon also registered three points in their Group I opener despite their delayed arrival in Kinshasa for their match against DR Congo.
Kick-off was pushed back by four hours to 20:00 GMT, but the Panthers won 1-0 thanks to Shavy Babicka’s powerful 23rd-minute header.
Peter Shalulile fired hosts Namibia ahead from the edge of the area in the 10th minute, but Bonfils-Caleb Bimenyimana levelled with a half-volley with two minutes left – and was immediately sent off for his celebration.
The Burundi striker received a second yellow card after raising his shirt to display a message on an undershirt, having earlier been booked for blocking a clearing kick by the goalkeeper.
Namibia will not play another qualifier until September, while Burundi play a home tie in Dar-es-Salaam against Cameroon on Tuesday
Upcoming Group C, F, G, I and L matches
Tuesday, 7 June
Senegal v Rwanda (Diamniadio, 18:00) – Group L
Wednesday, 8 June
South Sudan v Mali (Cairo, 13:00) – Group G
Uganda v Niger (Kampala, 13:00) – Group F
Congo-Brazzaville v The Gambia (Brazzaville, 16:00) – Group G
Gabon v Mauritania (Franceville, 16:00) – Group I
Tanzania v Algeria (Dar-es-Salaam, 16:00) – Group F
Benin v Mozambique (Cotonou, 19:00) – Group L
Burundi v Cameroon (Dar-es-Salaam, 19:00) – Group C
Leave A Comment