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Scintillating Australia hammer hapless Italy

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Sportal.co.nz     10 Nov 2013     Getty Images

The Wallabies responded in superb fashion to a disappointing 20-13 defeat to England last weekend, easing to a convincing win at the Stadio Olimpico.

It was the hosts who made the better start to proceedings, though, Jacques Brunel's men racing into a 10-0 lead as fly-half Alberto Di Bernardo slotted over a penalty before Australian-born full-back Luke McLean capped off a fine move to score the game's first try after 11 minutes.

But Australia quickly turned things around as number eight Ben Mowen and centre Tevita Kuridrani both crossed over for scores to move the visitors 14-10 in front.

Winger Nick Cummins increased Australia's advantage to nine points with a try nine minutes before the interval. And, 10 minutes into the second half, he put the two-time World Cup winners in command with his second.

The performance of Quade Cooper proved key to Australia's fortunes, the fly-half heavily involved as he fed Adam Ashley-Cooper for the side's fifth try.

Substitute Lorenzo Cittadini crashed over from close range for Italy just after the hour mark, but by that point the result had long since been decided.

Australia refused to take their foot off the gas, though, a Christian Lealiifano penalty and scores from Joe Tomane and Israel Folau taking the Wallabies to the half-century mark.

Tommaso Allan did grab a late consolation for Italy, however, that proved to be little more than a footnote in an outstanding Australia display.