The playoff between the Asian and South American qualifiers had been goalless after 120 minutes and was only decided when Peru’s Alex Valera missed his side’s sixth penalty, giving Australia a 5-4 win at the Ahmad bin Ali stadium in Doha.
The winners, 42nd in the world rankings, claimed their sixth ticket to the World Cup finals and a Group D opening match against defending champions France on November 22.
Peru, 22nd in FIFA’s list and who beat Australia 2-0 at the 2018 World Cup group stage, were roared on by 10,000 fans, most of whom had flown halfway round the globe for the playoff only to see a frustrating encounter between the rivals.
Australia’s Martin Boyle missed his side’s first penalty but all were then successful.
Australia’s substitute goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne danced on the goal line in a bid to upset the Peru players and Luis Advincula’s shot cannoned off a post while Valera’s miss set off wild celebrations among the Socceroos and their band of a few hundred supporters.