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Last Updated: Saturday, 25 October, 2003, 07:51 GMT 08:51 UK
Australia annihilate Namibia
Australia 142-0 Namibia

MATCH SUMMARY
Australia 142
Tries: Latham (5), Lyons, Mortlock, Tuqiri (3), Penalty try, Rogers (2), Paul, Giteau (3), Grey, Turinui (2), Burke, Roe
Cons: Rogers (16)
Namibia 0

Australia narrowly missed out on a world-record score against Namibia in an overwhelming victory in Adelaide.

The Wallabies won by a record margin, running in a World Cup record 22 tries in the process.

Chris Latham, Lote Tuqiri and Matt Giteau all scored hat-tricks, with Latham finishing with five touchdowns.

The full-back became the first Australian to claim more than four tries in an international.

And Mat Rogers, playing on the wing to make space for Latham in a largely second-string team, ended with 42 points - another national record - having assumed the kicking duties.

A little under 24 hours earlier, New Zealand had surpassed Australia's 90-point tournament record score with a 91-7 win over Tonga.

The Wallabies won that honour back in fine style, but were unable to eclipse the overall record their old foes ran up against Japan in the 1995 World Cup.

At least Japan got on the scoreboard in their 145-17 defeat to the All Blacks in South Africa. Namibia never threatened.

The Adelaide Oval is more renowned as a cricketing venue, but the scoreboard operators can rarely have been made to work harder.

We got a rugby lesson - they were ruthless
Namibia coach Dave Waterston
The board ticked over with more frequency than any of the 139 Test centuries scored in the home city of Australian legend Sir Donald Bradman.

The early exchanges of the World Cup have been littered with one-sided contests, but this was a whole new ball game.

It was one-sided and one-way from the first whistle, with Latham running in his opening touchdown within two minutes.

By half-time the score was 69-0 and three figures came up on 53 minutes when the impressive Giteau completed his hat-trick.

As an exercise in try-scoring it was consummate and clinical, but Australia coach Eddie Jones will have learned little in terms of assessing his support players.

The coach saw his backs combine well to run in tries at will, although they often ignored support, opting to barge through weak tackles in order to get a try to their name.

The pack, which welcomed back David Giffin as a second-half substitute, found nothing to test them in the forward confrontation.

Latham, who is frustrated at being over-looked for the Wallaby first team, stood out, completing his hat-trick in 25 minutes, equalling New Zealander Craig Green's Cup record.

It feels great to get that record
Chris Latham
He was up to four by the break, Green against Fiji in 1987 is the only other player to get a first-half quartet, and finally went in for his fifth with a matter of minutes remaining.

However, whether Latham has done enough to displace Rogers is debatable.

The league convert showed great pace on the wing, and like his team, his individual haul was only four points shy of a new record having landed a world Test best 16 conversions.

Jones will also have been impressed by Stirling Mortlock before withdrawing him on 50 minutes.

Mortlock ran in his second try of the tournament in the first half and will be pressurising Matt Burke, a sustitute try scorer, for the outside-centre berth in future outings.

However, those meetings will be a world away from this and Australia know that their campaign to retain the William Webb Ellis trophy kicks-off now.


Australia: C Latham; L Tuqiri, S Mortlock, N Grey, M Rogers; M Giteau, C Whitaker; D Lyons, D Croft, G Smith; N Sharpe, J Harrison; B Darwin, J Paul, M Dunning
Replacements: B Cannon, B Young, D Giffin, J Roe, M Cockbain, M Turinui, M Burke

Namibia: R Pedro; D Mouton, D Grobler, E Wessels, J Booysen; M Schreuder, H Husselman; J Van Lill, H Lintvelt, S Van Rooi; E Isaacs, H Senekal; N Du Toit, C van Tonder, K Lensing
Replacements: P Isaacs, A Blaauw, S van Der Merwe, S Furter, N Swanepoel, D Grunschloss, M Africa




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