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Kangaroos beat Ireland 50-0 at RLWC

Australia v Ireland

Australia strolled into the Rugby League World Cup quarter-finals with a 50-0 win over minnows Ireland in Limerick on Saturday.
Kangaroos beat Ireland 50-0 at RLWC
by AAP

By Liam FitzGibbon

LIMERICK, Ireland, Nov 9 AAP - Australia strolled into the Rugby League World Cup quarter-finals with a 50-0 win over minnows Ireland in Limerick on Saturday.

Tim Sheens' tournament favourites were not always totally convincing in their final group game but, as expected, were much too classy in near-freezing conditions at Thomond Park.

The Kangaroos ran in nine tries and didn't concede a four-pointer for the second straight match, with halfback Cooper Cronk and winger Jarryd Hayne both scoring doubles.

Daly Cherry-Evans, deputising for the rested Johnathan Thurston, was named man of the match and also got on the score sheet while Paul Gallen and interchange forward Andrew Fifita were particularly damaging up front.

The win ensured Australia finished top of Group A and they will face tournament surprise packets the US in Wrexham next Saturday in the quarter-finals.

Ireland, featuring a sprinkling of NRL players including Canberra prop Brett White, had conceded 74 points in their opening two matches but tried hard in front of 5021 fans.

The hosts did themselves no favours with their ill-discipline, on the wrong end of a whopping 9-1 penalty count when trailing 26-0 at halftime.

The Kangaroos looked on course to run up a cricket score after Hayne scored out wide less than 90 seconds into the game.

Cronk busted through the line to add a second try in the 11th minute but some sloppy play and gallant defending by the Wolfhounds meant the Kangaroos weren't able to get on a real roll in the first half.

Greg Bird got the scoreboard ticking over again in the 29th minute after being put through a gap by Cherry-Evans before Brett Morris crossed out wide in the 32nd minute.

Billy Slater then sold a dummy and scored out wide to give Australia a comfortable halftime lead.

The Kangaroos needed 17 minutes to add to the score after the break, with Cronk making a bust with relative ease to cross under the post for his second of the night.

Cherry-Evans scored with a fine solo effort three minutes later, regathering his own short kick before the impressive Fifita scored his first try for Australia in the 65th minute.

Hayne added his second late with Corey Parker converting from the sideline to bring up the half century.

Parker took the goalkicking duties in the second stanza from skipper Cameron Smith, who was rested after halftime.

Click Here for Aus v Ire Match Stats

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