It ended goalless at Al-Masry Club Stadium between Al-Masry and Congolese visitors AS Vita in the Caf Champions League semifinal first leg tie on Wednesday.
With the Egyptian hosts dominating play, they would be kicking themselves for failing to find the back of the net.
But it was AS Vita who first had a clear attempt at goal with Fabrice Ngoma failing to connect at close range to a low cross from the left wing 12 minutes into the match.
Palestinian striker Mahmoud Wadi who scored for Al-Masry in both legs of the quarter-finals was well-marshalled by AS Vita defenders Makwekwe Kupa and Yannick Bangala-Litombo.
A freekick by Islam Issa resulted in Wadi’s flashing header narrowly missing the target while under the challenge of Kupa on 26 minutes.
An unmarked Vita forward Jean-Marc Makusu could not execute well an overhead kick while in prime position inside the box at the end of a cross from Mukoko Batezadio.
The home side responded with Ahmed Shokri shooting off target, while Amr Moussa attempted to beat the half-time whistle with a long-range shot that was superbly saved by Vita’s Cameroonian goalkeeper Nelson Lukong Bongaman.
After the restart, Al-Masry continued to enjoy much of the ball, but it was Vita who came close to breaking the deadlock with Chadrack Lukombe shooting just wide from inside the box.
It turned out to be a difficult night for the Al-Masry attacking duo of Mohamed Grendo and Issa, while Hassan might have made a mistake by starting Ahmed Gomaa on the bench.
Right on the clock, Wadi could have separated the two teams but he headed wide.
AS Vita might have managed to avoid defeat on the road, but they are well aware that they would need to prevent conceding when they host Al-Masry in the second leg in Kinshasa on October 24.
A scoring draw between the two sides will see Hossam Hassan’s Al-Masry advance to the final on away goals rule.
With AS Vita beating Moroccan side RSB Berkane 3-1 in Kinshasa in the first leg of the quarter-finals, Al Masry’s trip to DR Congo might prove to be a difficult adventure for the Egyptians.