Ivory Coast’s hopes of picking a fourth straight World Cup ticket took a knock when beaten 2-1 at home by Gabon In group D.
The slip meant Morocco would have topped Group C with a win in Mali but they lost a penalty in a 0-0 draw.
In Bouake, Axel Meye’s goal was cancelled oot by Southampton’s Mario Lemina curling strike in the 29 minutes.
Ivory Coast are on seven points from four games, while Morocco move up to six points following their draw.
The Bamako clash was hugely pulsating despite its goalless status, with Mali goalkeeper Djigui Diarra superbly keeping out Hakim Ziyech’s 72nd-minute penalty.
Shortly after, Morocco substitute Oussama Tannane wasted another chance when missing the target with only Diarra to beat.
Morocco will lament the chances after failing to beat a side they hammered 6-0 in Rabat on Friday.
In group D, South Africa extended poor World Cup qualifiers campaign following a 2-1 home loss to Cape Verde on Tuesday.
South Africa also lost the first leg 2-1 on Friday, September 1st.
A brace from Garry Rodriguez in the 52nd and 67th minute had already sunk South Africa before Andile Jali pulled a goal back late in the 89th minute to end the game 2-1.
The defeat means South Africa are bottom in Group D on four points while Cape Verde are second on six points, same points with Burkina Faso who drew Senegal 2-2.