Saudis crash out
Australia scored three goals in five whirlwind minutes to come back from behind and dump Frank Rijkaard's Saudi Arabia out of 2014 World Cup qualification in Melbourne on Wednesday.
Australia trailed 2-1 at half-time but hit back with three second-half goals to run out 4-2 winners, as Oman leapfrogged the Saudis to claim the second Group D qualifying spot.
Oman's 2-0 home win over Thailand took them past the lavishly-funded Saudis into the March 9 draw for the final round of Asian group qualifiers.
Saudi Arabia will miss out on their second straight World Cup finals campaign after qualifying for four consecutive tournaments from 1994 to 2006.
The Saudis rocked the home side, scoring twice in the opening half and controlling possession, but Australia emerged stronger after German coach Holger Osieck's half-time team talk.
The road to Brazil has not been altogether smooth for Australia -- they lost in Oman in November and were lucky to scrape a win against Thailand four days later -- and skipper Lucas Neill admitted Saudi Arabia caught them off guard on Wednesday.
"It wasn't the best of first-half performances, we knew the Saudis would come at us, but it was a great response and a good talk at half-time and passing the ball around quickly in the second half opened them up a little bit," Neill said.
"It's March 9 now and then we can look ahead and we can really focus in on what we have to do to get to Brazil, the games are going to get tougher than this and we're going to have to be at our best."
Young midfielder Salem Al-Dossari put the Saudis in front in the 19th minute with a brilliant goal, controlling the ball and eluding three defenders before unleashing a strike that beat Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.
Australia gradually got more possession and equalised two minutes before half-time when the recalled Mark Bresciano put Alex Brosque clear and the Shimizu S-Pulse striker beat Waleed Abdullah from close range.
But the Socceroos paid for slack marking in first half injury time when Hassan Fallatah's cross found Nasser Alshamrani, who put the Saudis ahead for a second time.
Neill had a headed equaliser -- which would have been his first international goal -- flagged offside on 63 minutes, though replays suggested he was in line with the last defender as the ball was whipped into the box.
But the home side did finally equalise in the 72nd minute when the impressive Brosque laid on a ball for Harry Kewell to sidefoot home his 17th international goal.
The hosts then netted twice in quick succession to lead 4-2, with Brosque glancing home a Brett Emerton cross and Emerton scoring after an assist from the outstanding Bresciano to leave Rijkaard shaking his head in disbelief.
China 3 (Hao 43, 69, Yu 88) Jordan 1 (Salim 85)
UAE 4 (Saeed 20, 79, Al-Wehaibi 38, Matar 69) Lebanon 2 (El Ali 23, Maatouk 45+2)
South Korea 2 (Lee Dong-Gook 65, Lee Keun-Ho 71) Kuwait 0
Tajikistan 1 (Khamrakulov 61) North Korea 1 (Jang 53 pen)
Japan 0 Uzbekistan 1 (Shadrin 54)
Australia 4 (Brosque 43, 74, Kewell 72, Emerton 75) Saudi Arabia 2 (Salem Al-Dossari 19, Al-Shamrani 45+2)
Oman 2 (Al-Hadri 9, Aziz Mubarak 90+1) Thailand 0