Japan eased past Cambodia 3-0 to secure its first win in World Cup qualifying while South Korea thrashed Laos 8-0 to stay undefeated on Thursday. Iran spoiled Guam’s 100 percent record in Group D with a 6-0 win in Tehran, and Australia’s second consecutive win moved it to the top of its group. After being held to a surprising goalless draw by Singapore in its first Group E match in June, Japan was desperate for a convincing win. Keisuke Honda opened the scoring with a left-footed shot in the first half, and Maya Yoshida doubled the advantage early in the second half with an angled shot into the left corner.
Shinji Kagawa put the result beyond doubt on the hour when he was left unmarked in front of the goal and calmly tapped in from close range. Japan, bidding for its sixth straight World Cup berth, rose to four points, while Cambodia, which never seriously challenged the hosts, remained winless after three matches. In a later Group E match, Syria had a 1-0 home win against Singapore to remain in first place with six points. South Korea’s big Group G win included a Son Min-heung hat trick. China and Hong Kong finished in a goalless draw in Group C. Hong Kong improved to seven points, two ahead of China. In Group B, Australia scored four times in the opening half hour before eventually winning 5-0 against Bangladesh in Perth. Two goals from Tom Rogic and goals by Mathew Leckie and Nathan Burns put the hosts clear, and Aaron Mooy added the fifth in the second half.