It was a stark introduction to the rigours of the competition for Comoros Islands, who have only been FIFA members for the last two years and were making their first appearance in the FIFA World Cup preliminaries.
Faneva Andriatsima marked his return home from a recent move to Nantes in France with four goals as the Malagasy won 6-2 to establish a four-goal cushion ahead of the return leg of the tie in Moroni on 17 November.
Nevertheless, it was Comoros Islands who gave themselves hope of a fairy tale debut by taking the lead at the Stade Municipal Mahamasina in only the eighth minute.
This dream was extinguished by Andriatsima, however, with the striker taking just 47 minutes to complete his hat-trick before adding one more for good measure.
"It was thanks to the effort and the cohesion of the team that I got the goals," he said after the match.
"I think the team is showing some progress and we have made a great start to the campaign," Andriatsima said after his match-winning performance in Antananarivo.
Andriatsima believes his form owes much to a move to Ligue 2 outfit Nantes, where he is part of the reserves but is hoping for promotion to the first team squad soon.
There were two more goals on Sunday for Madagascar from Rija Juvence Rakotomandimby and Jean de l'Or Tsaralaza, who completed the scoring ten minutes from time.
Africa's 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign resumes in Freetown on Wednesday when Sierra Leone host Guinea Bissau in their first leg tie.