IRELAND'S World Cup pool rivals Australia crashed to the worst defeat in their history yesterday after Samoa pulled off a shock in Sydney.
The improving Islanders took their biggest scalp ever with a 32-23 victory over an understrength Wallabies side -- missing their Queensland Reds contingent -- that still included Rocky Elsom, Matt Giteau and Stephen Moore.
Leicester winger Alesana Tuilagi got the first of their four tries with a long-range effort and that set the tone as the abrasive visitors scored through Paul Williams, Kane Thompson and George Pisi, outgunning efforts from Digby Ioane and Giteau.
"We weren't good enough," said Australia coach Robbie Deans. "They're a good combination. The injection late in the game showed what we could have done but it was too late."
Australia kick off their Tri Nations campaign on Saturday at home to South Africa.