12 Nov 2011

Australia suffer shock loss to Oman in World Cup qualifying

2:50 pm on 12 November 2011

Japan, Uzbekistan and Jordan are the first sides through to the fourth round of Asian qualifying for the 2014 football World Cup - but Australia will have to wait to join them after suffering a surprise 1-0 away loss to Oman.

Asian Cup runners-up Australia could have been first through from Group D but they stuttered to their first defeat of the campaign in Muscat despite enjoying long spells of possession.

South Korea also edged towards one of the 10 places in the fourth round when they won 2-0 away at United Arab Emirates while Saudi Arabia recorded a much-needed 3-0 home win over Thailand to get their campaign back on track.

Japan thrashed Tajikistan 4-0 in Dushanbe before Uzbekistan beat North Korea 1-0 at home to send the duo through from Group C with 10 points from four matches.

In the fourth round the 10 teams will be split in to two groups of five with the top two from each guaranteed a place at the 2014 finals in Brazil.

Jordan booked their place with a 2-0 home win over Singapore to maintain their 100 percent record in Group A.

They look set to be joined by former Asian champions Iraq who beat China 1-0 for the second time in a month to leave the world's most populous country on the brink of failure.

The Group A match was played in Qatar because of security fears.

Three-times Asian champions Iran remain top of Group E but only after a stoppage time equaliser by Mojtaba Jabari grabbed them a 1-1 draw in Bahrain.

Qatar are level with Iran on eight points from four matches after they eased past Indonesia 4-0 in Doha.

Lebanon, the lowest FIFA ranked side still in the competition at 146th, produced another surprise result by winning 1-0 in Kuwait to move into second in Group B.