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Last Updated: Sunday, 23 September 2007, 14:21 GMT 15:21 UK
Australia v Fiji as it happened
Australia 55-12 Fiji


By Charlie Henderson

1511: FULL-TIME Australia 55-12 Fiji
Julian Huxley's conversion attempt is the last action of the game and a very good performance from Australia. England will have their work cut out against the Wallabies in the last eight, if they get that far. And Wales face a tough time when they go head-to-head with Fiji on Saturday.

"Both teams can be proud of their performances on a very hot day. A fantastic game. The Wallabies are looking very, very sharp. The Welsh should be very worried. They're not playing too well and Fiji are and if Fiji can keep the ball and win the set-piece I back them to win."
Simon Raiwalui, BBC Radio 5live Sports Extra pundit

79 mins: TRY Australia 55-12 Fiji
Drew Mitchell goes over for his hat-trick. Length of the pitch break starting with Sam Cordingley's thumped kick ahead into space behind the Fijians and Matt Giteau supplies the scoring pass. Julian Huxley can't land the kick.

78 mins: So close for Fiji after a fine spell, but the ball bobbles agonisingly away from Norman Ligairi and into touch.

77 mins: There will be no Australian flourish if they don't have the ball. Fiji are holding on to it well and working their way into Aussie territory.

75 mins: Australia steal Fijian ball at the lineout and are looking to finish with a flourish.

73 mins: TRY Australia 50-12 Fiji
The 50's up. Replacement Stephen Hoiles is over the whitewash wide on the left after Julian Huxley profits from some limp defending. Matt Giteau can't make the five seven as he hooks wide.

70 mins: A bloke in some sort of caveman costume hares across the pitch to great delight. As is the way with TV producers these days, those in their armchairs at home get a view of something completely different. Judging by those in the house in Montpellier it would have been worth watching. Great cheers and hilarity ensue.

69 mins: TRY & CONVERSION Australia 45-12 Fiji
All Fiji's hard work in attack comes to nothing as Isoa Neivua coughs up the ball in a tackle after ignoring men outside. Chris Latham hammers the loose ball forward and the counter ends with Drew Mitchell strolling in under the posts. An easy kick for Matt Giteau.

68 mins: Fiji's failure to hold on to the ball in the tackle is repeatedly hitting their hopes. Something to work on ahead of the Wales match.

66 mins: The sub is subbed. Scott Staniforth is still feeling the effects of that bone-crunching tackle-cum-collision and is replaced by Julian Huxley, who slots into 10 with Matt Giteau going back to 12.

65 mins: Strong defence from Australia. Fiji string together eight phases but don't really go anywhere despite some kamikaze bursts at green and gold bodies.

64 mins: The changes aren't helping the structure. It's all got a bit disjointed.

63 mins: Scott Staniforth has only just come on for Berrick Barnes and is already in a spot of bother. He's the jam in a sandwich between a pulverising tackle from Seru Rabeni and the on-rushing Adam Ashley-Cooper.

61 mins: Quick thinking by Matt Giteau from a penalty. A tap and he's gone, arcing towards the right touchline where he feeds Chris Latham, but the full-back is held up short of the line and concedes a penalty for holding on.

60 mins: A real scrappy patch. Anyone would think the ball had been replaced by a bar of soap.

58 mins: The crowd decide this game is over. A Mexican wave sweeps round the Stade de la Mosson, the international sporting sign that a match has become a game.

56 mins: TRY & CONVERSION Australia 38-12 Fiji
Bonus point try for Australia which has 'Made by Giteau' stamped all over it. He gathers a George Gregan pass and shifts it on to Adam Ashley-Cooper with the sleight of hand of a magician and his fellow centre glides through a gap and over from five metres. You can't keep Matt Giteau out of the action and he adds two more points to the board.

54 mins: The yellow-booted Seru Rabeni has Wallabies in his sights... any Wallaby will do and he'd probably wring the neck of a marsupial if there was one to hand. Next up is Chris Latham and it is a decisive tackle on the touchline as the Aussie 15 attempts to field a Berrick Barnes crossfield kick and squirm through.

53 mins: Seru Rabeni nails Berrick Barnes in midfield, but the young tyro maintains possession after the hit and Australia maintain their momentum after a slight check.

52 mins: One for the Aussie forwards there as they drive through the Fijian scrum and leave eight white shirts heaped on the turf.

49 mins: PENALTY Australia 31-12 Fiji
Australia are doing a great job at keeping the scoreboard ticking over. After some blocking by Fiji Matt Giteau steps up... and you know the rest.

46 mins: TRY & CONVERSION Australia 28-12 Fiji
Scrum-half Mosese Rauluni was another newcomer at the break and adds some go forward from a lineout. He needs no second invitation to dart through a big Australian hole after receiving the tap down and offloads to Aca Ratuva who dives over. Seremaia Bai adds the extras.

45 mins: Leicester back Sero Rabeni was a half-time change, but his hands are yet to warm up as he fumbles the ball forward in midfield.

43 mins: DROP GOAL Australia 28-5 Fiji
And another three points. Berrick Barnes drops into the hole as things go a bit stagnant in attack for the Australians and slots.

41 mins: PENALTY Australia 25-5 Fiji
Nice easy resumption for Australia and Matt Giteau. Fiji concede a penalty in front of the posts and the Wallabies go for goal. The French in the crowd don't like it, but seriously, what do you expect them to do?

1425: Dead in the water, that's Fiji isn't it? We'll find out. Berrick Barnes gets the game going again.

"I'm very impressed by Berrick Barnes - a carbon copy of Stevie Larkham, especially with the scrum cap."
Covert_Mole on 606

1421: There is commentary of this game on BBC Radio 5live Sports Extra which you can listen to on the BBC Sport website, but only if you have Real Player. There are some technical gremlins in the system so apologies if you tuning into dead air.

1418: Looking ahead, with the big if of England beating Tonga, Jonny Wilkinson and co will be facing the Wallabies in the last eight. What chance have they got? And what of Wales. They meet Fiji next Saturday for a place in the quarter-finals. Will they have the beating of the Islanders?

1414: HALF-TIME Australia 22-5 Fiji
Something to savour at the end for fans of Fiji, but this game is in the bag for Australia.

40 mins: TRY Australia 22-5 Fiji
Fiji spin play right to left along the three-quarters and Isoa Neivua powers over, with a bit of help from Norman Ligairi. The duo make mincemeat of driving over against five Wallaby defenders. That gets the biggest cheer of the afternoon.

39 mins: Fiji are playing the best rugby of the game. An attacking lineout gives them a foothold in the Wallaby 22.

38 mins: Fiji's Jone Qovu is hitch-kicking his way to the try line with a galloping run, but the whistle goes and he is called back. The number eight scooped to pick up a loose ball after Norman Ligairi was tackled on the 22, but the ball popped forward from the full-back's hands.

35 mins: TRY Australia 22-0 Fiji
Matt Giteau is having a golden day. Australia probe for an opening on the try line time and time again before eventually the centre pirouettes over on the right as Fiji get stretched. He can't add the conversion but that's 17 points for him already.

34 mins: Silly, silly play from Fiji. They push the penalty into touch but then dilly-dally over the lineout, and with referee Nigel Owens in the sort of mood he is today you can't do that. He tells them to give the ball to the Wallabies so they can get the game going instead.

33 mins: The best sustained spell of the game for Fiji ends with a penalty on halfway given against George Gregan for his constant yapping. He's like a Jack Russell on heat out there.

30 mins: TRY & CONVERSION Australia 17-0 Fiji
It has been coming. George Gregan spins the ball wide on the left where Chris Latham drops the ball on his boot to push through a soft grubber for Drew Mitchell to chase and touch down ahead of the turning defenders. Matt Giteau makes no mistake with an effort from wide. Nice kick.

29 mins: Attacking lineout for Australia on the left, but Wycliff Palu's tap down is shoddy and slows his team down.

26 mins: PENALTY Australia 10-0 Fiji
Points for the Wallabies as Matt Giteau strokes over from dead centre.

25 mins: Harsh call on the Fijians. They steal the ball but are pinged for not rolling away. Australia get the decision, but George Gregan gets a lecture from referee Nigel Owens. He has had enough of the Wallaby number nine refereeing things and calling for decisions.

24 mins: Australia are having so much of the ball in so many good positions on the pitch, but are not really doing much with it.

22 mins: Lote Tuqiri is belting along at full steam on the right, but an attempted tackle forces him an ounce wide and his little toe is in touch. It's the winger's 28th birthday today.

"32.04? It'll definitely be more than that! Fiji are by far the weakest of the Islanders and the Aussies are looking very very good!"
MagsyDMunsterMan on 606
No arguments on that this end. For any latecomers, that 32.04 is the average margin of victory to date in the World Cup.

20 mins: A quarter of the match gone and play has been pretty much exclusively in Fiji's half of the paddock. A few of the white-shirted Islanders are already puffing as well. Things are not looking good for them.

18 mins: That's just the tonic for the Aussies. That try looks to have settled them down. Rocky Elsom takes the ball forward with gusto and they are finding their groove.

16 mins: TRY & CONVERSION Australia 7-0 Fiji
Matt Giteau celebrates his 50th cap with a try and adds the conversion from under the posts. Fijian-born Lote Tuqiri did the damage with a searing break on the right. Maleli Kunavore almost intercepted the pass inside but only managed to juggle it into Giteau's grateful grasp.

15 mins: Quick recycling and this is better from Australia. They are up to a fourth phase... Wycliff Palu breaks in midfield under the posts but knocks on with the line in sight.

14 mins: Berrick Barnes? Wasn't he in 'Dallas'.

"Cliff Barnes was the guy in Dallas. Wasn't George Gregan in The Sweeney though?"
ciderstouffer on 606

13 mins: George Gregan hasn't been on the money early doors, but Berrick Barnes is. The fly-half sends out to pinpoint touchfinders to get Australia in the right part of the pitch.

9 mins: Fiji break. Debutant Jone Daunivucu sticks out a leg to block rival scrum-half George Gregan's delivery from the base of a scrum and Fiji pounce on the loose ball. A kick and chase is on, but Chris Latham remains cool and calm in defence to mop up.

5 mins: Just been alerted to some technical issues which have hopefully been cleared up. Safe to say, you haven't missed much. Still 0-0.

3 mins: Australia number eight Wycliff Palu warms his piston-like legs up with an early midfield charge and opposing number 10 Waisea Luveniyali bounces off him like an old rag doll.

1 min: When they played earlier this year in June the Wallabies ran out 49-0 winners.

1330: Up and running. Doris Day, Frank Sinatra and Vera Lynn all had British number ones in the year Fiji last beat Australia - 1954.

Australia: Latham, Mitchell, Ashley-Cooper, Giteau, Tuqiri, Barnes, Gregan, Dunning, Moore, Shepherdson, Chisholm, Vickerman, Elsom, Waugh, Palu.
Replacements: Freier, Holmes, McMeniman, Hoiles, Cordingley, Staniforth, Huxley.
Fiji: Ligairi, Delasau, Kunavore, Bai, Neivua, Luveniyali, Daunivucu, Yalayalatabua, Sauturaga, Qiodravu, Domolailai, Rawaqa, Talei, Ratuva, Qovu.
Replacements: Gadolo, Railomo, Lewaravu, Koyamaibole, Rauluni, Lovobalavu, Rabeni.

1328: Did you know the average winning margin in pool matches to date is 32.04? Didn't think so? Bit like 'Play Your Cards Right', are we going to be higher or lower than that today? Let us know your thoughts on 606, or drop a text in via 81111 on that or... well, whatever takes your fancy.

1326: George Gregan leads the Wallabies out and the scrum-half equals Will Carling's 59-cap record for Tests as a captain.

1325: Lovely weather in Montpellier and the players emerge.

Fiji 29-16 Canada
16 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union
Wales 20-32 Australia
15 Sep 07 |  Welsh
Japan 31-35 Fiji
12 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union
Australia 91-3 Japan
08 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union


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