Japan gave up a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 with China in the second match of the East Asian Cup at Seoul Olympic Stadium on Sunday.
With Australia and hosts South Korea sharing the spoils in a 0-0 draw to open the competition one day earlier, Alberto Zaccheroni's team had an opportunity to take control of the tournament, but were surprised by a late comeback from their unfancied opponents.
China, coached by caretaker Fu Bo following the departure of Jose Antonio Camacho last month, took a shock early lead, but then allowed Japan to equalise before the break.
Japan went on to take complete control of the contest thanks to two goals in the space of three second-half minutes but they could do nothing to prevent China's unexpected smash and grab, as their two late strikes earned them a draw.
All four teams in the tournament now have one point, leaving the competition wide open.
China, looking to make amends for a string of woeful recent results, started brightly and were rewarded after just four minutes, when Yuzo Kurihara fouled Yu Dabao inside the penalty area, and Wang Yongpo made no mistake from the spot.
Japan probed in search of an equaliser and although Haraguchi Genki wasted a good chance, Kurihara made amends for his earlier error in the 33rd minute when he headed the equaliser from close range.
China came close to restoring their advantage in the 43rd minute, when Shusaku Nishikawa had to get down low to tip Yu's shot inches wide of the post, following some terrific skill by Gao Lin.
Japan burst out of the blocks in the second half and they took the lead on 59 minutes, as Yoichiro Kakitani headed home Tomoaki Makino's cross.
And China were caught napping soon after the restart, when a clever long ball from Toshihiro Aoyama played Kakitani in behind.
The Cerezo Osaka forward drove for goal before prodding the ball to Masato Kudo, who finished calmly across the goalkeeper.
China were initially rocked by the concession of two quick goals but they eventually responded, as Wang hit the crossbar, before they earned a penalty in the ensuing goalmouth scramble.
Wang netted the spot-kick and back to within a goal and their confidence restored, China pressed on in search of an equaliser.
And it arrived through Sun Ke, who got in behind the Japan defence to guide a cross beyond Nishikawa, as China - against the odds - avoided defeat for the first time in their last four matches.
Zaccheroni will surely be furious with the result, and will expect better against Australia on Thursday.
China's next match is against South Korea at Hwaseong Stadium on Wednesday.
|Y. Kurihara||3' 32'|
|Coach: A. Zaccheroni|
for T. Aoyama 65'
for G. Haraguchi 71'
for Y. Kakitani 87'
|Warburton rubbishes Van Persie rumours|
|Hospitalised Grujic ´can´t remember anything´, says Klopp|
|Premier League, Serie A appeal to Simeone|
|Copa Libertadores success ´a dream´ for Borja|
|Pochettino honoured by Simeone comparisons|
|Argentina have not asked for Sampaoli - Monchi|
|Ancelotti: Fitness the key for Bayern|
|Bayern win ´a small foundation´ for Montella´s Milan|
|Icardi missing due to injury - Mancini|
|Emery satisfied with warm-up win over Madrid|
|Conte quiet on Tevez, apologises for Fabregas red|
|´It was far from a friendly´ - Klopp on Chelsea defeat|
|Madrid off the pace, concedes Zidane|
|Chelsea 1 Liverpool 0: Cahill´s header seals win|
|Grujic says Chelsea´s Matic told him to sign for Liverpool|
|Bolasie wants to see Berahino and Benteke at Crystal Palace|
|Rodgers hails ´outstanding result´ as Celtic draw|
|Walcott claims level of MLS is close to Premier League|
|Bayern Munich 3 AC Milan 3 (3-5 on penalties): Bonaventura seals win|
|Atletico Nacional 1 Independiente del Valle 0 (2-1 agg): Borja secures Copa Libertadores crown|
|Icardi absent again as Inter held by Estudiantes|
|Real Madrid 1 Paris Saint-Germain 3: Zidane oversees poor pre-season start|
|Hazard vows to rediscover best Chelsea form|
|Klopp reveals why he sent Sakho back to Liverpool|
|Tevez: Conte wanted me at Chelsea|
|Sunderland hopeful Defoe will be fit for Man City opener|
|Sundowns overcome Zamalek to book semi-final spot|
|Falcao scores as Monaco return ends in defeat to Fenerbahce|
|Southampton overcome Twente, Asoro stars for Sunderland|
|Man City must adapt to Guardiola tactics quickly - Denayer|
|Chelsea and Leicester to play in EFL Trophy as five Premier League clubs refuse|
|Tolisso pulls plug on €37.5m Napoli move to stay at Lyon|
|Ancelotti shrugging off Guardiola´s shadow|
|Uruguay international Lodeiro swaps Boca for Seattle|
|Ibrahimovic will bring United back to where they belong - Larsson|
|Transfer speculation frustrates Aubameyang|
|Willian ready for ´toughest Premier League season in history´|
|Astana 1 Celtic 1: Griffiths hits late equaliser|
|De Laurentiis feels betrayed by Higuain swapping Napoli for Juventus|
|Costa: Chelsea cannot be any worse than last season|
|Wilshere: Xhaka can hold Arsenal midfield together|
|Pato signs four-year deal with Villarreal|
|Higuain sets sights on Champions League after Juventus move|
|Lazio snap up Immobile from Sevilla|
|Batshuayi worth the money, insists Cahill|
|Arnautovic signs new Stoke deal|
|Smith leaves Liverpool for Bournemouth|
|Barcelona insist Arda Turan will stay|
|Andre Gomes: Barcelona suit my identity better than Real Madrid|
|Niersbach to appeal FIFA ban|
|Barcelona agree Mascherano renewal|
|Fernandinho can play in 10 positions - Guardiola|
|Reading´s kit launch is out of this world|
|Ben Arfa: I do not want to be PSG´s star player|
|FA Cup to trial fourth substitute|
|We want Balotelli and he wants us, says Besiktas chief|
|Crowd welcomes Higuain as he arrives for Juventus medical|
|Guardiola warns Man City stars: If you´re not fit, danger is coming|
|Mkhitaryan prepares to prove himself at United|
|Cavani: No pressure replacing Ibrahimovic|
|Wenger vows to keep transfer plans ´secret´ after Lacazette snub|
|Brannagan open to Championship loan move|
|Wenger wants to sign Mertesacker replacement|
|Ancelotti: Bayern´s transfer business done|
|Brisbane Roar sign former Danish international Kristensen|
|Verratti, Luiz missing for PSG|
|Sounders part ways with foundation coach Schmid|
|Mane turned down Manchester United for Liverpool|
|Zidane on Pogba: Until August 31, anything can happen|
|Mkhitaryan driven by father´s death|
|Inter rejected Napoli offer for Icardi, says president|
|Clichy: City fighting fit after Guardiola pizza ban|
|Everton and Burnley win as Hull are held|
|Ajax held by PAOK after Cillessen howler|
|Conte left frustrated by ´crazy´ money in transfer market|
|Neymar makes Barcelona case to Gabriel Jesus|
|Rostov comeback twice for Champions League draw with Anderlecht.|
|Arsenal defender Mertesacker set for lengthy lay-off|
|Conte not selling ´fantastic´ Matic|
|Ibrahimovic keen on MLS and Beckham´s Miami project|
|Neymar: I play for Messi, he´s the man|
|Barcelona reveal details of Andre Gomes deal|
|Suarez bullish over Barcelona prospects|
|Ajax claim Napoli keen on Milik to replace Higuain|
|Totti labels Higuain´s Juventus move ´a disaster´|
|Juventus confirm Higuain deal|
|Pato to Villarreal ´in the final stage´|
|PSG sign Lo Celso|
|Muller: Beating Dortmund will be more fun this season|
|Juventus sign Higuain from Napoli for €90m|
|Pastore: I´m like God in Paris|
|Injured Lanzini out of Olympics|
|Allegri unperturbed by Higuain fee|
|Menezes replaces Bento at Cruzeiro|
|Sporting rejected major bids from Inter and Liverpool for Joao Mario, claims father|
|Pochettino pleased by Tottenham despite Juventus defeat|
|Eriksson: Allardyce the right man for England|
|Mourinho makes United train after stepping off plane from China|
|Hazard can still match Messi, says Pedro|
|Pjanic shows there is life at Juve, with or without Pogba|
|Juventus 2 Tottenham 1: Benatia bags win for Serie A champions|
|Dembele: I am not the Bundesliga´s next superstar|
|Lyon claim €35m Arsenal offer for Lacazette rejected|
|Donnarumma dreaming of Milan captaincy as he eyes long-term stay|
|Robson: Ibrahimovic can match Van Persie´s first year at United|
|Rooney should remain England captain - Eriksson|
|Emery wants new striker at PSG|
|Santos accept Juventus bid for Gabriel|
|Eriksson expects Sweden to try and tempt Ibrahimovic out of retirement|
|Spurs signing Janssen almost quit|
|Leicester stay best for Mahrez - Ranieri|
|Allardyce to take Mourinho cue on Rooney|
|Ings ready to outdo big-money signings|
|Henderson optimistic over Liverpool campaign|
|Allardyce hardened to the challenge of England post|