Africans lead race for Olympic honours
Africa staked its claim to a share of Olympic football glory on Tuesday as both its teams at Sydney 2000 bagged a place in Saturday's quarter-finals.
Nigeria held Group A leaders Italy to a 1-1 draw in Adelaide, while Cameroon also drew 1-1, a little disappointingly perhaps, with the Czech Republic in their Group C match in Brisbane.
That meant the Nigerians accompany Italy into the last eight, a rousing 2-1 win by Honduras (thanks to two brilliant goals by David Suazo) over Australia in the same group being finally to no avail.
Top spot in Group C went to the United States, comfortable 3-1 winners over Kuwait on a cold night in Melbourne, the Americans making the second round for the first time in Olympic history.
The heroes of the night, however, were losers : Australia, who suffered their third defeat in as many matches but were treated to a standing ovation in recognition of their refusal to bow out of the Olympics tamely.
In the women's tournament, Australia gave Brazil a fright in Sydney but finally succumbed 1-2, Sunni Hughes and Raquel each scoring a goal of truly memorable brilliance.
The Brazilians go into the semi-finals with Germany, who had already qualified and who kept their 100 per-cent record with a lacklustre 1-0 win over Sweden in Melbourne.
Wednesday's matches in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra and Melbourne will complete the quarter-final line-up, with most attention on the Japan-Brazil clash in Brisbane and the three-cornered in the women's group involving the US, China and Norway.