By Toby Prince
On a day the country was stripped of hosting the Africa Cup of Nations, Cameroon women’s national team offered succour by clinching a spot at next year’s World Cup.
The Indomitable Lionesses became the third and final African team to qualify for next year’s Women’s World Cup by beating Mali 4-2 on Friday in the third-place game at the African Cup of Nations (AWCON).
Cameroon joins Super Falcons and South Africa to book a ticket to France in June and July.
Nigeria, the defending African champion, and the Bayana Bayana will meet in Saturday’s final.
A brace of goals by midfielder Ninon Abena gave Cameroon a 2-0 lead over Mali.
Fatoumata Diarra hit back for Mali and an own goal by Cameroon defender Aurelle Awona made it 2-2 in the 56th minute.
Substitute Aboudi Onguene put Cameroon ahead again six minutes later and captain Christine Manie sealed victory in injury time with a long-range free kick.
Cameroon will be making just its second appearance at the Women’s World Cup, Nigeria its eighth, and South Africa will be making its debut.