Congo Monday survived a late scare to beat debutants South Sudan 2-1 at the ongoing Africa Under-20 Cup of Nations in Egypt.
Goals scored in the 45th and 63rd minutes of the game gave the Red Devils a 2-0 lead.
But South Sudan pulled a goal back in the 83rd minute of the match played at Suez Canal Stadium in Ismailia.
The South Sudanese played with all seriousness as they were participating in the tournament for the first time.
But they were forced to make and early substitution following injury to defender Sarfino Lado.
The Bright Stars forward Felix Abishai was presented with the first real opportunity of the match under the floodlights.
The lanky striker forced a save from Christophe Wamba with the near post low effort.
The Red Devils grew into the match and enjoyed possession in large parts of the first half.
But they lacked the cutting edge to trouble Simon Yogusuk in the South Sudan goal.
Bassinga put Congo ahead with a close range finish against the run of play on the stroke of half time.
The Man of the Match slotted home past Yogusuk with a poacher’s finish.
Sousssou Ilendo doubled Congo’s advantage from the penalty kick spot after captain Ngongara was brought down in the area.
South Sudan pulled one back courtesy of Paul Mara seven minutes from time to give South Sudan their first-ever goal at the tournament.
The debutants came close to sharing the spoils late in the encounter through Atiki Abiaza ferocious low drive which hit the side netting of the Red Devils goal.
Congo held on to secure the points and join Uganda at the summit of Group B.
This was after a 2-1 defeat of Central African Republic in an earlier encounter at the same stadium.
On Tuesday, Gambia tackle Tunisia in Group C at Alexandria Stadium, while Benin engage Zambia in the second Group C encounter of the day at the same venue. (NAN)