LONDON, Nov 17 (Internet): Australia, Trinidad & Tobago, Switzerland, Spain and the Czech Republic completed the 32-team line-up for the World Cup finals after a day of unrelenting drama and tension brought qualifying to a close Wednesday.
The action began in Sydney where Australia reached the World Cup for the first time in 32 years and became the first team to do so through a shootout after beating Uruguay 4-2 from the spot after a 1-0 extra time win saw the playoff end 1-1 on aggregate.
Trinidad & Tobago survived a barrage of missiles from angry Bahrain fans after their match as they pulled off a spectacular comeback in the qualifying campaign with a 1-0 win in Manama for a 2-1 aggregate victory and a first appearance in the finals.
Switzerland ended a 12-year absence from the finals despite losing 4-2 in Istanbul to Turkey.
Their 2-0 win in the first leg in Bern saw them through on away goals as the tie ended 4-4 on aggregate, the Swiss having lost a 3-0 aggregate lead after scoring a first minute penalty.
Spain reached their eighth successive World Cup since 1978 with a 1-1 draw in Slovakia for a 6-2 aggregate win.
The Czech Republic qualified for the first time as an independent nation. They last appeared as Czechoslovakia at Italia' 90.
The Czechs saw off Norway 1-0 in Prague after a 1-0 win in Oslo and became the 32nd and last team to qualify for Germany.
All 32 qualifiers are now known for next summer's extravaganza, which begins on June 9 in Munich and ends on July 9 in Berlin. The draw takes place in Leipzig on December 9.