Kangaroos crush brave Kumuls
Debutant David Williams scored a hat-trick as Australia cruised to a 46-6 win over Papua New Guinea in Townsville.
Last Updated: 10/11/08 1:16pm
Australia maintained their perfect record in the 2008 World Cup with a comfortable 46-6 victory over plucky Papua New Guinea in Townsville.
Debutant David Williams led the way for the Kangaroos with a hat-trick while Joel Monaghan and Scott Prince each crossed twice.
Jonathan Thurston kicked seven goals on his return from injury as coach Ricky Stuart rested several of his stars ahead of next weekend's semi-final against either Ireland or Fiji.
The Kumuls battled bravely throughout but their third straight defeat means England and New Zealand will meet for a place in the final.
The underdogs did at least manage a try at the Dairy Farmers Stadium through Menzie Yere, though the biggest cheer of the night was saved for the retiring Stanley Gene.
The evergreen half-back was carried from the field with tears rolling down his cheeks at the finish having played his final international game.
Sadly there was to be no fairytale finish for the national hero as Australia clinically saw off their spirited opponents, starting with Williams' first of the night after 11 minutes.
The winger got on the end of Thurston's pin-point kick to the corner and after having a try ruled for a forward pass soon after, he did get a second legally five minutes before half time.
By then Monaghan had helped himself to a brace while only a desperate ankle tap by David Moore denied Anthony Watmough scoring a fifth try.
When sub Prince picked off a pass from Gene to waltz in three minutes after the interval, the floodgates looked set to open. However, the Kumuls put their bodies on the line as if the trophy depended upon it.
Their defensive line was breached again, though, Prince getting his second before Williams completed his treble when he raced down the touch line.
Papua New Guinea finally got on the board when Yere won the race to a grubber kick but the last word went to the hosts, Anthony Tupou rounding out the scoring before veteran Gene took centre stage after the final hooter.