Ghana and Mali from Group D choked up a draw and victory in Franceville and Libreville respectively to bring the number of teams who qualified for the quarter-finals of the ong-going Africa Cup of Nations finals to eight.
In Franceville, the Black Stars failed to beat a plucky Guinea outfit despite the Sylie Nationale playing with 10 men for the final twenty minutes of the match.
Outstanding Black Stars midfielder Emmanuel Agyemang Badu weighed added a goal to his rich vein of form lately, when he scored early in the first half.
The Guineans fought back gallantly and celebrated an equaliser when Abdoul Razzagui Camara's speculative shot found its mark at the back of the net right on the stroke of half-time to tie the match 1-1 going into the half-time break.
Guinea needed nothing short of a victory to advance while Ghana were ware that a draw was enough to see them top of Group D at the end of the group campaigns. So the Syie Nationale gave it their best shot to try and win the match.
Michel Dussuyer's boys were dealt a harsh blow when key player Mamadou Dioulde Bah was sent off by South African referee Daniel Bennet after he received a second yellow card for a foul on Kwadoh Asamoah.
With that dismissal Guinea's chances of winnng the match and qualfiy for the quarters went up in smoke. The match was to end 1-1.
Mali in Libreville choked up a crucial 2-1 win over Botswana to end their group stages with 6 points, while Guinea could only manage 4 points following a painful draw with a strong Ghana side.
Earlier in the week, Sudan caused a stir at the Afcon finals by pipping Angola to a quarter-final berth on goal difference following their gallant 2-1 victory over Burkina Faso. The Sudanese will join Ivory Coast into the quarter-finals from Group B. The Elephants completed the group stages with a 100% record following their 2-0 victory over Angola.
Zambia and Equatorial Guinea qualified from Group A, while Gabon proved to be the revelation of the tournament thus far with a gutsy performance by winning a nail-biting tie with Tunisia 1-0 to top group with 9 points from 3 matches. Tunisia joined them into the quarters despite the loss.