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AFC World Cup qualifying wrap: Wins for Australia, Iran

Australia grabbed a memorable victory over Iraq, while Oman, Iran and Uzbekistan also prevailed in World Cup qualifiers on Tuesday.

Goals from Tim Cahill and Archie Thompson in the dying stages saw Australia prevail 2-1 after substitute Alaa Abdul Zahra had given Iraq an unlikely lead.

The Socceroos controlled much of the tempo but were stunned when Abdul Zahra fired a shot past Mark Schwarzer in the 72nd minute.

Australia looked in trouble at the neutral Grand Hamad Stadium in Qatar but were rescued when Cahill equalised in the 80th minute and Thompson sealed the result four minutes later.

The win sees Australia climb to second at the halfway mark in Group B with five points, five behind leaders Japan with four matches remaining.

In the group’s other fixture, Oman claimed their first win of the campaign with a 2-1 defeat of Jordan in Muscat.

Oman move to third on five points with an inferior goal difference to Australia, while Jordan are fourth on four points and Iraq slip to the bottom on two points.

In Group A, 10-man Iran accounted for South Korea 1-0 in Tehran.

Masoud Shojaei was dismissed for receiving a second yellow card in the 55th minute, though South Korea were unable to capitalise on the advantage in personnel as Javad Nekounam scored the decisive goal on 75 minutes.

Elsewhere, a 13th-minute Sanzhar Tursunov goal proved the difference as Uzbekistan defeated Qatar 1-0 in Doha.

South Korea remain on top of the group with seven points, separated only by goal difference to Iran in second.

Tue 16 October, 2012
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