Australia will meet New Zealand in a dream women’s rugby league World Cup final after the Jillaroos thrashed Canada 58-6 in their semi-final on Sunday.
The Jillaroos were dominant from the outset against a Canada side that had made seven changes to the team who were beaten 88-0 by Australia in their final pool game four days earlier.
New Zealand were far too good for England earlier in the day, winning 52-4 to book their place in Saturday’s final in Brisbane.
On another perfect day in the shire at Southern Cross Group Stadium, five-eighth Ali Brigginshaw gave Australia the lead in the second minute when she chased through her own kick to score.
Captain Steph Hancock put on a hit and spin at the line before barging over shortly after and when Isabelle Kelly scored her first from a Caitlin Moran grubber, Australia led 16-0 inside 10 minutes.
Karina Brown reaped the rewards of a Nakia Davis-Welsh break to make it 20-0 inside 20 minutes before Kelly scored her second.
Cronulla Sharks back-rower Talesh Quinn showed impressive composure to hold the ball up before hitting Brown with a cut out pass for her second as Australia kept pace with the clock to make it 30-0 after half an hour.
The Jillaroos showed their adaptability as their left side attack put on a show. Just as it had been Maddie Studdon orchestrating their pool game thrashing of the Ravens down the right, Brigginshaw and Moran ripped apart Canada’s defence down the left.
Quinn had a try of her own three minutes before half-time, again down Australia’s left, from a short Brigginshaw pass before the five-eighth grabbed her second on the stroke of half-time.
Moran put in an early kick but another awkward bounce for Canada fullback Irene Patrinos allowed Brigginshaw to run through and score, giving the Jillaroos a 42-0 lead at the break.
Australia conceded just their second try of the tournament eight minutes into the second half when Natasha Smith barged over from dummy half close to the line.
Cronulla Sharks star Ruan Sims got herself on the score sheet when she crashed underneath the posts just before the hour mark, with a Davis-Welsh try pushing Australia past the half century mark shortly after.
Hancock crossed for her second to complete the scoring, with Australia’s rampant navigation of the group stage and semi-final firing a warning to the Kiwi Ferns as they look to defend their World Cup title won in 2013.
It will be the third tournament in a row New Zealand and Australia have met in the final having won one each, with this year’s final to be played as a double header with the men’s final for the first time.
Australia will take on England in the men’s decider.
Australia 58 (Isabelle Kelly two, Karina Brown two, Ali Brigginshaw two, Steph Hancock two, Talesha Quinn, Ruan Sims, Nakia Davis-Welsh tries. Caitlin Moran seven goals)
Canada 6 (Natasha Smith try. Irene Patrinos goal)
at Southern Cross Group Stadium