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November 13, 2015

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China shoots 12 past hapless Bhutan

CHINA hammered 12 unanswered goals past hapless Bhutan last night as it ramped up its World Cup qualifying hopes with the country’s biggest win in 15 years.

Australia, Japan and South Korea also enjoyed comfortable wins on a night of few surprises in Asia’s round two — apart from the giant scoreline in Changsha, Hunan Province.

After Mei Fang’s 10th-minute opener, Yang Xu hit four, including a penalty, and Yu Dabao, Yu Hanchao and Wang Yongpo all bagged braces as China ran riot.

The pain didn’t finish until two minutes from time for Bhutan when Zhang Xizhe grabbed the 12th and last goal for Alain Perrin’s rampant home side.

The 12-0 win heaped further embarrassment on Bhutan, the remote Himalayan kingdom known for its Gross National Happiness index, after it also lost 0-15 to Qatar earlier in qualifying.

After five games in its first appearance in round two, the “Land of the Thunder Dragon” lies bottom of Group C on zero points and a goal difference of minus 42.

China’s biggest win since it beat Guam 19-0 in 2000 throws down the gauntlet ahead of next week’s crunch clash with rival Hong Kong, which stayed second behind Qatar with a 1-0 victory over Maldives.

Asian champion Australia, shocked 0-2 by Jordan last time around, got back on track with a 3-0 win over Kyrgyzstan which featured a 42nd international goal for record scorer Tim Cahill.

AC Milan’s Keisuke Honda and Maya Yoshida of Southampton both scored as Japan beat Singapore 3-0 away to go top of Group E.

Son Heung-min came off the bench to provide two assists as South Korea took apart Myanmar 4-0 to take a firm grip on Group G.

South Korea and Qatar are the only teams in the second round of qualification with five wins from five games.

“We expected that Myanmar would be defensive but we showed what we could do early in the game and made a good start,” South Korea coach Uli Stielike said after seeing his team record its 15th win this year.

Eight group winners and the four best-placed runners-up will proceed to the next stage of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

The games also double as a means of entry to the 2019 Asian Cup in UAE.


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