Australia ripped apart the Indian defence to hand the visitors an 8-3 bashing in the opening match of the double leg tri-nation hockey tournament here.

In what turned out to be a nightmare on Deepavali night, Australia blew away the Indian team with some great field manoeuvres and penalty corner drills.

The hosts scored freely against a clueless Indian defence with Kieran Goers, Desmond Abbot and Chris Ciriello netting a brace each while Eddie Ockenden and Glenn Turner added a goal each.

Though the Indians tried to make a comeback with goals from Danish Mujtaba (12th and 66th minute) and S.V. Sunil (32nd minute), it turned out to be too little and too late.

It was a troublesome night for the visitors, whose defence was a let down, especially while defending the penalty corners.

Australian penalty corner specialist Ciriello, who is facing stiff competition in the squad with the return of Luke Doerner, led the victory march.

Danish and Sunil narrowed the Australian score with a goal apiece in the first half.

But Ciriello nullified that in the 25th and 35th minutes. The match went into the lemon break with Australia leading 5-2.

Young Danish punched in another goal five minutes before the hooter but by then the visitors' fate was already sealed.

Pakistan is the third team in the tri-nation tournament, which will play here and at Bunbury — Perth's south side tourist resorts. India will take on Pakistan on Friday. The ranking matches will be played at Perth on November 3. — PTI

More In: SPORT | Today's Paper