England slipped to a 46-run defeat in the second one-day international in Hobart after failing to chase down Australia's 230 all out.
Doug Bollinger did the majority of the damage with four for 28, including the key dismissals of Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen in successive balls, as England were bundled out for 184 in 44.5 overs.
Bollinger had earlier combined in a record Australia ninth-wicket partnership of 88 with Shaun Marsh (110), whose second one-day century proved decisive in a low-scoring encounter.
But Australia's victory, which moved them 2-0 ahead in the seven-game series, came at a price after spinner Nathan Hauritz and quick Shaun Tait both suffered injuries to leave their World Cup hopes in doubt.
Hauritz was taken to hospital with a suspected dislocated shoulder after sliding to field a ball, while Tait injured his left thigh late in the game.
England's chase was undermined by the loss of wickets at regular intervals after they made a bad start.
Matt Prior, playing his first one-day in 10 months following his surprise World Cup call, failed to score after edging his third ball from Brett Lee to Shane Watson at first slip.
Bollinger then supplied his early double blow when first he pinned Strauss on the crease with an inswinger that the skipper reluctantly reviewed, apparently on the advice of Jonathan Trott, only for technology to back-up the on-field lbw call.
Pietersen was then bowled off an inside-edge for a first-ball duck to leave England 36 for three.
Australia were clearly intent on doing the damage early with their fast men, but a 47-run stand between Trott and Ian Bell had seemingly seen off their new-ball threat only for both to fall to soft dismissals.
Each reached 32 before Trott carelessly thrashed a Steven Smith long-hop to David Hussey at short mid-wicket and soon after Bell cut Lee straight to Smith at point.
Hauritz then left the field in clear discomfort holding his shoulder before England started to rebuild their chase again with Eoin Morgan and Michael Yardy putting on a patient stand of 44.
But again they lost wickets in quick succession with Morgan miscuing a lofted drive which Tait made good ground to hold on to running back from mid-on.
Yardy was then run out by Watson after being sent back attempting a quick single and England's innings was dissolving towards defeat.
Australia suffered a further injury blow when Tait was forced to leave the field, but the writing was already on the wall for England as their last hope Tim Bresnan, batting with a runner due to a tight calf, skied a catch off Bollinger to Watson at third man.
Earlier, Marsh's second one-day century allowed Australia to post a defendable total despite suffering two collapses.
The hosts were reduced to 33 for four to vindicate skipper Strauss' decision to send Australia in after morning rain offered some early assistance.
Ajmal Shahzad (three for 43) made the initial inroads when openers Watson and Brad Haddin both played on to their stumps from deliveries that seamed back off the wicket.
Stand-in skipper Michael Clarke and Hussey then both cut loosely at Bresnan and Chris Tremlett (three for 22).
England's start could have been even better still but a top-edged hook from Cameron White, off Tremlett, fell agonisingly out of the reach of Prior despite his run and dive.
While White was living dangerously he eventually settled alongside Marsh, who had been brought into the squad as a replacement for the injured Mike Hussey, as they put on a 100-run stand for the fifth wicket.
The pair profited on England's lack of a fourth seamer, with Strauss turning to Trott's part-timers, while the finger spin of Yardy and James Tredwell, called in to replace the injured Graeme Swann, offered a diminished threat.
White brought up the century stand alongside Marsh with a slapped four off Yardy, but he then offered the simplest of return catches from the next ball to prompt a second Australia collapse.
This time the hosts lost four for nine as Strauss turned back to his seamers to immediate effect and leave Australia 142 for eight.
But again England failed to confirm their ascendancy as Marsh, who was dropped by Shahzad after offering tough caught and bowled chance, combined with Bollinger (30) in a record Australian stand for the ninth wicket of 88.
Western Australian Marsh defied the struggles of his team-mates as he continued to find the middle of his bat with sweet timing while Bollinger, whose highest score in 27 one-dayers had been just three, added some lusty hitting to frustrate the tourists.
Marsh, the only one of Australia's batsmen not in their World Cup squad, brought up his deserved century, from 101 balls, with a towering six off Yardy before Tremlett returned to eventually finish off the innings.
He ended Bollinger's belligerence when he miscued a catch to Shahzad running around from mid-off before Marsh was last man out heaving into the deep.Reuse content