Socceroos

Cahill wants Socceroos to restore Australia pride

Cameron Bancroft admitted using tape to try and artificially alter the condition of the ball during Australia's third Test against South Africa in Cape Town on Saturday, with captain Steve Smith stating the opening batsman was acting under instructions from himself and the team's "leadership group" of senior players.

Cricket Australia removed Smith and vice-captain David Warner from their positions for day four of the match, with wicketkeeper Tim Paine taking on the captaincy as the beleaguered tourists subsided to a crushing 322-run defeat.

Hat-trick hero Jedinak fires Socceroos to World Cup

The Socceroos had been held to a goalless draw in the first leg in San Pedro Sula last week but had a trio of second-half strikes from the skipper in Sydney to thank for securing their ticket to Russia.

Jedinak's first came courtesy of a deflected free-kick, before Tim Cahill went close to doubling the advantage with an excellent header that bounced off the top of the crossbar.

But Cahill's close call would not prove costly for Ange Postecoglou's men, who soon left Honduras needing two goals as Jedinak punished a Bryan Acosta handball by firing home from the penalty spot.

Tim Cahill left out of Socceroos squad to visit Thailand

Cahill was among a quartet of dropped players including Apo Giannou, Chris Ikonomidis and Ryan McGowan.

It is believed Coach Ange Postecoglou is resting Cahill because of general soreness issues.

Striking duo Jamie McLaren and Nathan Burns were called up to the 23-man squad, along with Josh Risdon and Milos Degenek.

Full Socceroos squad

Nathan BURNS F.C. Tokyo, JAPAN 23 (3)

Milos DEGENEK TSV 1860 Munchen, GERMANY 4 (0)

Adam FEDERICI A.F.C. Bournemouth, ENGLAND 16 (0)

Alex GERSBACH Rosenborg BK, NORWAY 2 (0)

Socceroos squad: Seven players called up

Brattan, on loan from Manchester City, has made an impressive start to the season and was named along with other A-League-based players Jason Geria (Melbourne Victory), Josh Risdon (Perth Glory) and Tommy Oar (Brisbane Roar).

Left-back Behich, Nathan Burns and Milos Degenek have also been added to the squad which drew with Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou plans to cut his squad to 23 after the weekend of matches.

Socceroos jump up the FIFA world rankings

The perfect start to the Road to Russia has seen the Socceroos raise 12 positions to become the 45th ranked team - which makes Ange Postecoglou's side the 2nd best team in Asia behind Iran (37th).

Japan dropped seven places to the 56th after a shock home defeat to the UAE in the first WCQ.

Argentina has retained top position from Belgium, with Brazil have climbed into the top in a tie with Colombia.

FIFA world rankings top 10