Lautoka FC will contest its first OFC Champions League football final next month after beating Marist FC of Solomon Islands 1-0 in Honiara yesterday to advance 2-1 on aggregate.
Finishing proved costly for the Fijian side in the first leg but this time they took their chance, with Praneel Naidu pouncing inside the box to beat Anthony Talo at the near post, after Marist had failed to clear the ball from danger.
Head coach Kamal Swamy said the players put in a lot of effort to achieve the result.
"I think the half-time pep-talk was very important for us because we knew we would be out of the tournament if we didn't do something," he said.
"We had to and give everything and then that was what they did. It's just the players who gave 100 per cent and full credit to each of them, they deserve it."
Marist began the match with the advantage of an away goal but coach Jerry Allen was left to rue what could have been.
"It wasn't our day today maybe," he reflected post-match.
"I think we had our chances in the first half and we should have killed the game off in the first half but we missed our opportunities.
"That's what happens in football. If you convert your chances you will win. We played well and we kept on fighting in the second half, we created some opportunities but we couldn't put them away."
Lautoka will meet Team Wellington in the home-and-away final after the New Zealand club beat defending champions Auckland City on away goals after a 2-2 draw in the second leg.
The first leg is in Wellington next weekend before the return match at Churchill Park a week later.