Aussie joy: Chris Latham dives over for the Wallabies' second-half try

CARDIFF, 15 September - Three first-half tries set Australia on course for a 32-20 victory over Wales in their Pool B match at Millennium Stadium on Saturday.

The home side came back strongly in the second-half with tries from Jonathan Thomas and Shane Williams but the Wallabies held on for their second victory of the tournament.   

The Wallabies had built a commanding 25-3 first-half lead with tries from Matt Giteau, captain Stirling Mortlock and Chris Latham's first score just before the break.

Mortlock added a penalty and Berrick Barnes who set up the first try kicked a drop goal which appeared to put the Wallabies in full control at half-time.

However Wales mounted a second-half comeback which began when Thomas broke through for their first try early in the second-half.

Two subsequent penalty kicks from substitute James Hook and the Australia lead was cut to 25-13.  

There was a key moment of the match on 60 minutes when a long up-and-under from Latham was bobbled by Stephen Jones allowing Latham to snatch the ball and race in for his second try and a 32-13 lead for the visitors. 

The Wallabies held on for their second straight victory despite a late try from Williams while Wales suffer their first defeat of the tournament following an opening win over Canada.

Fly half Stephen Larkham was ruled out of the match and will be out of action for three weeks with a knee injury while Mortlock was also forced off at half-time.  

RNS gnf/mr