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Lackluster Portugal held by Cape Verde in friendly

COVILHA, Portugal (Reuters) - Lackluster Portugal were held to a disappointing 0-0 home draw by 117th-ranked Cape Verde in a pre-World Cup friendly Monday.

Portugal were slow and predictable throughout, making it easy for Cape Verde to apply an ultra-defensive strategy.

The hosts' first chance was a long-distance effort by Pedro Mendes that forced a fine save on 18 minutes.

The Portuguese winger saw most of the ball and left back Fabio Coentrao and Nani linked up well. Mendes almost scored when he wandered to the right side on the half hour, his first-time shot calling keeper Fock into make another good save.

Portugal showed a little more intent in the second half with Cristiano Ronaldo, ineffective until then, firing a fierce shot against the keeper on 62 minutes and shooting against the side netting moments later.

Unable to create more danger, Portugal were dealt a blow when midfielder Tiago limped off with a thigh injury on 70 minutes.

Portugal will play another friendly at Covilha, against Cameroon on June 1, before flying to South Africa. They are in Group G along with Brazil, Ivory Coast and North Korea for the June 11-July 11 finals.

(Writing by Shrikesh Laxmidas in Lisbon; Editing by Ed Osmond)