Australia: (18) 33
Britain struggled to make headway
Tries: Hodges, Gasnier, Hunt, Lockyer, Tupou, Tate
Goals: Thurston 4
Great Britain: (4) 10
Tries: McGuire, Senior
Great Britain's Tri-Nations campaign ended in a hefty defeat to Australia at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium.
Justin Hodges and Mark Gasnier punished defensive lapses to put the Kangaroos 12-0 up inside the first eight minutes.
Danny McGuire's try raised hope briefly but Karmichael Hunt grabbed a third Australian try before the interval.
Darren Lockyer scored a fourth after the re-start before Keith Senior's try, but Lockyer's drop-goal and tries from Anthony Tupou and Brent Tate sealed it.
Defeat sent Great Britain home with their tails between their legs and ensured the final will be a repeat of last year's, when New Zealand shocked Australia 24-0 at Elland Road.
The tourists, needing to avoid defeat to make the final, made a horror start, shipping two tries in the opening eight minutes.
They came out and showed us how to play rugby
Lockyer's chip-through in the fourth minute caught Britain's defence napping, allowing the alert Hodges the simplest of touchdowns.
Moments later Richard Horne, replacing the departed Sean Long at scrum-half, stepped out of Britain's defensive line, leaving a huge hole which Gasnier exploited to the full.
Johnathan Thurston converted both to put the Kangaroos in command at 12-0 up, and Lions coach Brian Noble sent on Adrian Morley and James Roby from the bench as early as the 18th minute.
Both added immediate urgency to proceedings, but two McGuire kicks to the Aussie line on the sixth tackle petered out and Britain were fortunate not to suffer further damage.
McGuire's try was a rare highlight
The powerful Gasnier broke Horne's tackle but the Australian centre's pass out of the back of the hand was knocked on by Tate metres from the try-line.
Britain enjoyed another slice of fortune to temporarily raise hopes of a fightback, Thurston knocking the ball out of Lee Gilmour's hands but only into the path of McGuire, who collected his own kick ahead to score.
Not a recognised goalkicker, the Leeds stand-off pulled his subsequent attempt at goal horribly wide.
Australia hit back swiftly, the influential Thurston stepping his way to the British line, before Hunt pirouetted out of Paul Wellens' desperate tackle to score.
Thurston's goal made it 18-4, leaving the tourists with a mountain to climb in the second half.
That swiftly became a nigh-on impossible job when Wellens' kick-off went straight out on the full to immediately hand the initiative to Australia.
The hosts promptly killed the game within a minute, Lockyer looping around Gasnier and cruising past Senior to touch down with barely a laid a hand on him.
Thurston hit an upright with his goal attempt, and Britain required try-saving tackles by Gareth Raynor and Jamie Peacock on Tate and Hunt to prevent further scores.
The tourists did rouse themselves briefly, the impressive Gareth Hock's off-load putting Senior over on the hour, with Wellens adding the goal.
But Raynor's knock-on in the tackle ended a promising Terry Newton break, and Lockyer's drop-goal with seven minutes left put Britain three scores behind.
Australia rubbed salt into the visitors' wounds as replacement Tupou, then Tate, crossed in the final four minutes.
Australia: Hunt, Tate, Gasnier, Hodges, Inglis, Lockyer (capt), Thurston, Kite, Smith, Civoniceva, Ryan, Hindmarsh, O'Donnell. Replacements: Berrigan, Tupou, O'Meley, Kaufusi.
Great Britain: Wellens, Pryce, Gleeson, Senior, Raynor; McGuire, Horne; Fielden, Newton, Peacock (capt), Hock, Ellis, O'Loughlin. Replacements: Roby, Morley, Gilmour, Wilkin.