Malawi national team the Flames on Saturday defeated Benin 4-3 in post-match penalties to qualify for the second round of 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying.
In a match played at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre, Malawi who lost 0-1 in the first leg away, scored through John Banda to level the aggregate score – after only 13 minutes when he struck a spectacular scissor kick volley from the edge of the area.
Malawi, who are 16 places below Benin on the Africa rankings list, remained on the front foot for the rest of the game but were unable to break through again, leaving the match to be decided on spot-kicks.
It was Benin who went first and surprisingly their star player Stephane Sessegnon missed, handing Malawi an advantage they never surrendered as they went on to win the shoot-out 4-3.
They will now face Mali, Ethiopia and Africa’s top-ranked side Algeria in Group B.
The third and final group stage – which features 28 teams trying to take the 15 places available – will get underway in September before finishing in November.
The 2015 Africa Cup of Nations starts in Morocco on 17 January, with the final taking place on 8 February.