Malaysia have confirmed their place for the 2016 AFC U-16 Championship which will be held in India next year when they came back from behind to draw Laos 1-1 in their final game in the group.

The win allowed Malaysia to top a closely contested Group G.

Following earlier wins against Northern Mariana Islands, Timor-Leste and the Philippines; Malaysia went into the game knowing that anything but a defeat would confirm their passage through to the finals.

However, it was Laos, who could themselves have sealed first place in the group with a win, that were to draw first blood when they went ahead shortly before the break courtesy of Boualapha Chaleunsouk’s goal.

It was not to be for Laos though, as, amid high drama, substitute Azrin Azahari struck with only a minute gone in the second half to ultimately seal a vital point for the Malaysians and condemn the valiant Laotians to a second-placed finish.

Eleven group winners and four best second-placed teams will join India in next year’s finals, with the tournament hosts receiving an automatic qualification.

Should India finish top of their qualifying group or among the four best second-placed teams, the fifth best second-placed nation will qualify for the final competition.

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