Egypt's Bradley concerned

CAIRO - Bob Bradley admitted Egypt were below-par in their last friendly before the upcoming two World Cup qualifiers after they were held to a 1-1 draw by minnows Botswana in Cairo on Tuesday.

The Pharaohs fell behind after six minutes when a dreadful blunder by veteran defender Wael Gomaa allowed Jerome Ramatlhakwane to open the scoring but an impressive header by Ahmed Hegazy brought the hosts level seven minutes before the interval.

"We didn't perform well tonight. We relatively improved after the break but the performance was not up to our standards," Bradley told a brief news conference following the game.

Bradley was full of praise of Fiorentina's central defender Hegazy, who was making his first appearance for Egypt since rupturing his cruciate knee ligament in December.

"Hegazy's return was one of the main advantages tonight. Not only because he scored the equalizer, but also for producing a fine performance throughout the 90 minutes," the American boss added.

Egypt are on top of Group G of the World Cup qualifiers with nine points, five ahead of second-placed Guinea and seven clear of Mozambique with three matches remaining. Zimbabwe lie at the bottom with a solitary point.

The seven-time African champions could secure their place in the final round with two matches to spare if they beat Zimbabwe on Sunday and Guinea fail to overcome Mozambique.  - Ahram Sport

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