Show charts the rise of minnows Benin

Sello Rabothata and Sapa-AFP

Sello Rabothata and Sapa-AFP

Benin, who are regarded as minnows in football circles, reached the last qualifying phase in Africa for the 2010 World Cup on Sunday with giants Egypt and Ivory Coast poised to join them.

Razack Omotoyossi scored twice as the Squirrels of Benin beat the Black Antelopes of Angola 3-2 in a Cotonou thriller to accompany Cameroon and Nigeria into the third elimination stage on the road to the finals in South Africa.

Victory gave Benin an unassailable five-point advantage over surprise 2006 World Cup qualifiers Angola and Uganda in Group 3 with one series of second round fixtures to come next month.

With so-called giants Bafana Bafana already asking for complimentary tickets to watch the African spectacle after their elimination was confirmed last weekend, South Africans should thank the African Soccer Television show who will provide highlights of the road to Angola on SABC1 Sport's Laduma programme on Sundays.

These highlights include the African champions, Egypt overcoming the Democratic Republic of Congo 1-0 in Kinshasa with star midfielder Mohamed Aboutraika snatching the winner.

A point from their final fixture against whipping boys Djibouti in Cairo will clinch top spot in Group 12 for the Pharaohs while Malawi and DR Congo scrap for one of eight slots for runners-up.

Didier Drogba-less Ivory Coast surrendered the lead in a 1-1 away draw with Mozambique, but closest Group 7 challengers Botswana lost leaving the Elephants needing only a draw to progress when they host modest Madagascar.