Mile Jedinak's first-half goal against Bahrain at Al Sadd Stadium was enough to send Australia through to the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup.
The Genclerbirligi midfielder scored his second goal in as many games to ensure the Socceroos finish top of Group C and go through to the last eight unbeaten following two wins and a draw.
Australia needed just a point to progress but they attacked from the outset as Blackburn's Brett Emerton pulled a shot wide after just two minutes before Tim Cahill fired wide from outside the area.
Bahrain did not really threaten until just before the half-hour when Abdulla Fatadi drove a shot over the bar and went even closer in the 31st minute when Fatadi cleverly played the ball into the path of Ismaeel Abdulatif, but Mark Schwarzer did well to block the striker's shot at his near post.
The game was really starting to open up as half-time approached and Bahrain goalkeeper Mahmood Mansour had to be alert to keep out Harry Kewell's low effort.
And it was Australia who drew first blood eight minutes before the break when Jedinak sent a fine dipping shot from over 20 yards into the back of the net.
Abdulatif was clearly brimming with confidence following his four-goal haul against India in Bahrain's last group game and he forced Schwarzer into a fine save five minutes into the second half with a vicious strike from just outside the area.
Jaycee John had the Australian defence in a panic in the 57th minute but Lucas Neill blocked the forward's sight of goal and in the end he could only lash a shot into the side-netting.
Schwarzer again maintained Australia's slender advantage after 68 minutes when he denied Abdulatif with his feet from point-blank range before the defence cleared the danger.
The Socceroos were creating little in terms of chances themselves, although Carl Valeri's seemingly harmless shot from distance needed Mansour to gather at the second attempt midway through the second half.
But after that the game petered out into a midfield battle with Bahrain seemingly resigned to exiting the Asian Cup while Australia await the outcome of tomorrow's Group D matches to determine who they will face in the last eight.
Australia coach Holger Osieck was full of praise for man-of-the-match Mark Schwarzer after the Fulham goalkeeper produced vital saves to ensure the Socceroos progressed to the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup as Group C winners
with a 1-0 win over Bahrain today.
"We know the quality that Mark has to offer to the team and I'm happy to have him there,'' said Osieck. ``He had an excellent performance and made some good saves, especially in the second half. He kept us in the game and we must give him credit.
"It was our target to go to the quarter-finals and I'm glad to achieve the target. We have seen in other games that there are quality teams and I'm happy to be still in the competition.''
The win was not without its negatives, however, with Brett Emerton receiving a second yellow of the tournament and the Blackburn midfielder will be suspended for Saturday's quarter-final match while Everton's Tim Cahill picked up a knock, although he is expected to be fit for the next game.
Who Australia's next opponents are will not be determined until the outcome of Wednesday's Group D matches, but Schwarzer was feeling confident of his side's chances of maintaining their run at the tournament regardless of who they face.
"We will take each game as it comes and work on any opponent that is up against us,'' said the 38-year-old. "We will show them the respect they deserve but also believe in our own ability. We have another four days now until the next game. Hopefully now we can keep progressing and build on the results.''
Meanwhile, Bahrain coach Salman Sharida was satisfied with the performance of his players, even though they have failed to reach the last eight for the second successive tournament.
"We had a good performance tonight and we were the better side as we controlled the game and we were organised,'' he said. "I'm satisfied with the performance and satisfied with the work that I did in the past two months.
"Our players were strong and they showed good spirit in the game. We have had some difficult situations in the team but the players showed a good performance in the matches that we had.''