Australia 48-4 Lebanon: Five-star Addo-Carr propels world champions to semi-finals

By Sports Desk November 04, 2022

Australia brushed aside minnows Lebanon 48-4 to take their place in the Rugby League World Cup semi-finals.

Inspired by Josh Addo-Carr's five tries, Australia never offered up any chance of an upset at the John Smith's Stadium in Huddersfield.

Not that the reigning world champions were at their very best, though Lebanon – whose coach Michael Cheika will be switching codes to take charge of Argentina against England on Sunday – only managed to capitalise once, with Josh Mansour going over in the second half.

Addo-Carr's 19-minute hat-trick had Australia way ahead, with Latrell Mitchell's try and a double from Cameron Murray nudging Mal Meninga's team to 30-0 up by the interval.

Australia's star man Addo-Carr had his fourth early in the second half, and was on hand to take his tally for the tournament to 11 after Mansour had snatched a consolation for Lebanon.

Liam Martin barged in to round off the scoring for Australia, who were unable to push on and reach the 50-point mark.

Next up for Australia is a last-four encounter with Fiji or New Zealand, convincing winners of Group C, at Elland Road.

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    Cricket Australia (CA) this month withdrew from a scheduled ODI series against Afghanistan, which was due to take place in March, because of the Taliban's treatment of women.

    CA announced it was opting out of the series following consultation with relevant stakeholders, including the Australian government.

    The Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) described that decision as "an unfortunate attempt to enter the realm of politics and politicise the sport", accusing CA of "prioritising political interests over the principles of fair play and sportsmanship".

    Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Najam Sethi on Monday vowed that Babar Azam's side will be taking on Afghanistan in what will now be a Twenty20 International series rather than ODIs at an offshore venue.

    Asked about the PCB stance on the reasons for Australia's withdrawal, he said: "That is not our business and we don't like to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries.

    "My personal stance is that politics and cricket shouldn't be mixed up, so following that principle the series is subject to pending approvals from the Pakistan government and I think approvals will be granted."

    Sethi explained why the matches will be 20 overs per side rather than 50, with both teams already assured of a place in the World Cup this year.

    He added: "I met with the executive members of Afghanistan Cricket Board and they were asking us to play an [ODI] series, but we didn't find any attraction playing the series.

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