Rooney double peps England; Swiss enjoy; Faroes peg Austria

October 12th, 2008 - 2:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Hamburg, Oct 12 (DPA) Wayne Rooney scored twice as England followed up their 4-1 victory in Croatia with a 5-1 triumph over Kazakhstan at Wembley Saturday to continue their smooth start to World Cup qualifiers.Switzerland meanwhile enjoyed their first win under coach Ottmar Hitzfeld by beating Latvia 2-1, while the Faroe Islands collected a rare point by holding visiting Austria 1-1.

England scored all their goals in the second half to move onto nine points from three games at the top of Group 6.

A Rio Ferdinand header opened the scoring, before an own goal, two from Rooney and a last-minute effort from substitute Jermaine Defoe completed the tally, with Zhambyl Kukeyev briefly making it 2-1.

Ukraine and Croatia finished goalless in the group, leaving Ukraine on seven points and Croatia on four

In Group 4, Mikael Forssell scored from the penalty spot to give Finland a 1-0 win over Azerbaijan, while Wales secured a 2-0 win over Liechtentstein to go top of the group on six points.

Hanover striker Forssell converted in the 62nd minute to give the Finns four points after two games in the group, the same as Germany who were to meet Russia in Dortmund in a later game.

In Group 7, the Faroe Islands came close to repeating their shock win over Austria in 1990 in their first international, but had to settle for a 1-1 draw - their first point after 21 defeats.

The home side took the lead two minutes after the break through Bogi Lokin in Torshavn, only for central defender Martin Stranzl to equalize two minutes later.

Karel Bruckner’s side began their qualifying campaign with a 3-1 victory over France but then lost 2-0 to Lithuania, who top the group ahead of a later game in Serbia. Romania host France in the group’s other match Saturday.

In Group 9, Scotland were held to a goalless draw by Norway at Hampden Park.

The result leaves Scotland top of the group but with just four points from their first three games. Group favourites Netherlands were playing Iceland later in the evening.

Switzerland earned their first win under coach Ottmar Hitzfeld, edging Latvia 2-1 in a Group 2 match.

Alex Frei in the 63rd minute and Blaise Isetsima Nkufo in the 73rd scored either side of a 71st-minute goal by Dennis Ivanovs, two minutes after team-mate Juris Laizans was sent off following a second booking.

Georgia and Cyprus drew 1-1 in Group 8 where world champions Italy were playing Bulgaria.

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