Australia’s bid to host the football World Cup in 2022 has taken a hit, with Tahitian Reynald Temarii – the Oceania boss who would have supported the Aussie bid – stood down by Fifa’s ethics committee.

Temarii’s one-year ban, coming after a British newspaper lured him into a vote-buying sting, means he will not be present in Zurich on December 2, when Fifa decides who will host the 2018 and 2022 tournaments.

Nigerian Amos Adamu was also caught in the scandal and has been banned for three years, meaning 22 votes will be cast, rather than 24, reducing the target for outright majority from 13 votes to 12.

The scandal was exposed by Sunday Times reporters, who approached the delegates, pretending to represent US business interests keen to make sure America won the 2018 event.

The revelations have caused severe damage to Fifa’s reputation and the integrity, its bidding process and the two banned delegates, as well as to Australia’s cause.

It is still too early to count Australia out, however, and their officials maintain that the right to host the tournament can be secured without Temarii, but the task becomes more difficult without his guaranteed support.

Adding insult to injury is the fact Fifa’s ethics committee cleared the Spain/Portugal and Qatar bids of collusion, leaving Qatar as the nominal favourite to host the tournament.