By Yoo Jee-ho
TOKYO, March 12 (Yonhap) -- Australia suffered its first loss of the World Baseball Classic (WBC) on Sunday against Japan, a result that gave South Korea hope of advancing to the next stage.
Australia took a 7-1 loss in Pool B action at Tokyo Dome on Sunday to fall to 2-1 for the competition.
South Korea defeated the Czech Republic 7-3 earlier Sunday to improve to 1-2. The Czech Republic fell to 1-2.
Japan became the first Pool B team to qualify for the quarterfinals following the Czech Republic's loss, and put the icing on the cake by beating Australia to finish at 4-0.
In order for South Korea to join Japan, South Korea must first have the Czechs beat Australia in a game starting at noon Monday. And then South Korea must defeat China starting at 7 p.m. the same day.
That way, South Korea, Australia and the Czech Republic will finish at 2-2.
The three tied countries will then go to a tiebreaker, using a formula based on runs allowed.
The first criterion is the lowest quotient of runs allowed divided by the number of defensive outs recorded in games between the tied teams.
The next category looks at the earned runs allowed, using the same formula as above. The third criterion is the team batting average in games between the tied teams.
South Korea lost to Australia 8-7 last Thursday and beat the Czech Republic 7-3 Sunday, both of them in nine innings.
South Korea allowed 11 runs, all of them earned, over 18 innings, accounting for 54 defensive outs.
Australia allowed seven earned runs over nine innings, covering 27 outs, against South Korea.