Goalkeeper Gabaski was the hero by saving two penalties as Egypt edged past hosts Cameroon in a penalty shootout after a goalless draw to set up an Africa Cup of Nations final against Senegal.
Sunday’s final sets up a mouthwatering meeting between Liverpool forwards Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane at the same venue – the Olembe Stadium in Cameroon’s capital Yaounde.
Hosts Cameroon had shown more impetus in 90 minutes, twice hitting the post through Michael Ngadeu-Ngadjui’s looping header and Samuel Gouet’s thunderous long-range strike, which flicked the woodwork.
Egypt’s star man Salah was kept quiet for much of the game, curling a strike from outside the area narrowly over and almost profiting from a loose back pass, but he could not convert.
But he did not have to step up in the shootout as Cameroon missed three of their efforts, with Gabaski saving from Harold Moukoudi and James Lea Siliki, while Clinton N’Jie side-footed wide.
An ill-tempered ending to normal time had seen Egypt coach Carlos Queiroz sent off for remonstrating with the referee and his assistant Wael Gomaa cautioned too.
It means they will both be missing from the touchline for the final as Gomaa was also yellow carded in the quarter-final against Morocco.
Meanwhile, Cameroon will face Burkina Faso in the third/fourth-place play-off, which has been brought forward a day to Saturday.