Nevertheless, Cavani made sure that the elation did not last too long as he pulled off an aesthetic curler into the bottom right corner just after 7 minutes of the equalizer.
"When it comes to the rivalry with Ronaldo at club level that's a different thing altogether", he told reporters ahead of Saturday evening's clash at the Fisht Olympic Stadium.
For Ronaldo, this was his fifth Round of 16 match but he has yet to score a goal in any of them, leading to another disappointing World Cup ending for one of the best soccer players of all time.
There has been little love lost when they have met: Ronaldo once punched Godin during a Spanish Super Cup tie, but the defender got his own back in a meeting previous year by elbowing the Portuguese in the head.
Bernardo Silva and Goncalo Guedes then combined well but the latter's cross was headed clear before it could reach Ronaldo.
71 - Edinson Cavani down hurt.
65 - Portugal subs now. Andre Silva, Ricardo Quaresma and Cedric Soares drop out. Cavani changed fields to Suarez, who returned the ball with a lovely back-post cross. Pepe heads it in to knot things up, 1-1. That's the first goal allowed all tournament for Uruguay.
52 - Uruguay's defense is rock solid.
It's been all about Uruguay in this one.
Ronaldo played a big part in Portugal getting four points in the 2014 group stage, with an assist to earn his country a draw against the United States and the game-winning goal against Ghana, but they ultimately finished third in their group and missed the knockout stage. Portugal hasn't been able to respond despite a few opportunities including a Ronaldo free kick.
Uruguay remind me so much of Atletico Madrid. Uruguay still leads, 1-0. While same goes for the Portuguese players and their immediate nemesis, Luis Suarez.
Santos, though, also warned his side of the quality throughout the Uruguay ranks, from skipper Diego Godin at the back to Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez up front.
6th minute - Ronaldo gives it a rip from outside the box but can't convert it.
Our recommended way to watch the Portugal vs Uruguay World Cup soccer game online without cable is via Hulu Live TV with complete World Cup coverage. Lucas Torreira with the delivery, but no shot on-target from it.
4' - Corner for Uruguay.
Fans should expect a feisty game which will be extremely competitive.
Only one can advance, and Portugal needs to play better than it did in tying Spain and Iran.
That is the challenge before Cristiano Ronaldo and his Portugal team having scraped past Iran, Morocco, and Spain, scoring five and conceding four.