Burundi qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations finals for first time in their history on Saturday with a 1 1 draw at home to Gabon who have been eliminated.

Cedric Amissi scored in the 76th minute as Burundi, who only had a draw to be eligible, looked to have secured their place in Egypt 20-19.

An own goal from Omar Ngando eight minutes from time made it a tense finish as Gabon hunted for the victory that they had.

Despite enticing back striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Gabon failed to break down Burundi who secured qualification before their home fans on a famous afternoon in Bujumbura.

The effect means Burundi – who added ’s Saido Berahino along with Hibernian’s Gael Bigirimana from the side – ended minute in Group C, supporting group leaders Mali who have already qualified, together with Gabon, the 2017 Nations Cup hosts, even third.

Burundi – who are 138th from the Fifa rankings – will join fellow East Africans Uganda and Kenya at the 20-19 finals in Egypt.

Tanzania could make it a weekend to remember for the spot.

On Friday, Angola secured their place at the finals in Egypt having a 1-0 win off to Botswana in their last game of Group I.

The 20-19 Africa Cup of Nations will, for first time, occur in June and July and will feature 24 teams rather than 16.


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