Chad scored just after half-time to shock Sierra Leone 1-0 Saturday as 2018 World Cup qualifying continued in Africa.
Central African Republic, forced to play a home game against Madagascar in Antananarivo because of violence in Bangui, suffered a predictable 3-0 loss.
Making a rare international appearance, Eritrea fell 2-0 at home against far higher ranked Botswana as the 13 first-leg schedule was completed.
There will be three second legs Sunday and a further 10 Tuesday with the overall winners joining the 27 top-ranked African teams in a second round of home-and-away eliminators during November.
Winger Leger Djimrangar struck on 47 minutes to bring the Chadians success in N’Djamena over opponents 54 places higher on the world rankings.
The home team had gone into the game under a cloud after a 5-1 drubbing by Egypt at the same ground last month in the Africa Cup of Nations.
Sierra Leone travelled to the heart of Central Africa in a confident mood after holding reigning African champions Ivory Coast during September in another Cup of Nations qualifier.
That morale-boosting result was achieved in Nigerian city Port Harcourt and that is where the Leone Stars will host the return match against Chad.
Ebola epidemic fears prevent Sierra Leone hosting international fixtures in Freetown and, until Nigeria intervened, they were forced to play home games at opponents’ grounds.
Central African Republic are a match for most teams in Bangui as they proved last month with an impressive Cup of Nations triumph over highly-rated neighbours the Democratic Republic of Congo.
However, having to play improving Madagascar twice in Antananarivo had a demoralising effect on the team and a three-goal ‘home’ defeat at Stade Mahamasina leaves them on the brink of elimination.
Goals from Michael Rabeson and Njiva Rakotoharimalala gave the Madagascans a comfortable half-time advantage and captain Paul Johann added a third midway through the second half.
Eritrea remain without a World Cup victory after seven matches spanning four qualifying competitions having conceded a goal to Botswana in each half at Cicero Stadium in Asmara.
Galabgwe Moyana gave the Zebras the lead midway through the opening half and experienced Joel Mogorosi scored the second midway through the second half.
It was a predictable outcome as Botswana are ranked 91 places above Eritrea in the world — the widest gap among the 13 first-round match-ups.
Malawi trail Tanzania 2-0 going into the return match in Blantyre Sunday and Ethiopia must overcome a 1-0 deficit when they play minnows Sao Tome e Principe in Addis Ababa.
Kenya seem sure to advance as they enjoy home advantage and a 5-2 lead over defensively brittle Mauritius.