Burkina Faso enter final

Burkina Faso won a first African Nations Cup final place on Wednesday after a sensational penalty shootout win over Ghana but will take the field on Sunday without key player Jonathan Pitroipa who was shown a controversial red card.

Burkina Faso, who will meet Nigeria at Soccer City , edged their neighbours 3-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw at the end of extra time in the semifinal at the Mbombela Stadium to continue the dream run by a team who started as rank outsiders.  Nigeria had earlier beaten Mali 4-1 in the first semifinal in Durban.

Burkina Faso joy, however, was tempered by the news that Pitroipa will not play on Sunday after he was sent off near the end of extra time after receiving a second caution for simulation.

Burkina Faso said they would be launching an immediate protest to overturn the card handed by Tunisia referee Slim Jdidi.

Burkina Faso rallied after conceding an early penalty, the start of a series of controversial decisions, one of which resulted in Ghana taking a 13th-minute lead through Mubarak Wakaso.

It was his third successful penalty of the tournament but was awarded after an innocuous looking challenge from fullback Mady Panandetiguiri on Ghana's Christian Atsu in the penalty area.

However, the Burkinabe, despite the exertions of two hours of football in Sunday's quarterfinal win over Togo, came back strongly to equalise on the hour mark.

In the penalty shootout Ghana missed first to hand the advantage to Burkina Faso but it was back at 2-2 after three kicks each. Then Emmanuel Clottey missed, Bance scored with a cheeky chip and a save from Daouda Diakite sealed Burkina's final place.

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