Africa Cup of Nations hosts Egypt rested star Mohamed Salah as they defeated Tanzania 1-0 Thursday in the first of two warm-up matches before the June 21 tournament kick-off.
With the prolific Liverpool scorer sitting on the bench in Alexandria, it was left to full-back Ahmed Elmohamady to break the deadlock on 65 minutes with a back-post header off a cross.
Elmohamady is a long-serving Pharaoh and could face Salah in the English Premier League next season as his Aston Villa club won promotion.
Record seven-time Cup of Nations champions Egypt dominated possession but lacked cohesion against Tanzania, who are back at the Cup of Nations after a 39-year absence.
Title favourites Egypt face Zimbabwe in the tournament opener in Cairo and also play the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda in Group A.
They return to Mediterranean city Alexandria this Sunday to tackle Guinea in another friendly ahead of the 24-team African football showpiece.