Meeke continued to impress in the event set to decide his World Rally Championship future and was runaway points leader Ogier's closest rival for most of the loop.
Hirvonen raised his game through the morning as well, and was only half a second down on Ogier's flying Volkswagen on the 24-kilometre Newry stage.
With Meeke having a scare with a big rock on the same stage, Hirvonen closed to within 0.2 seconds of his temporary team-mate, while Ogier is nine seconds clear of the Citroens up front.
Rally Australia
Ogier: Home crowning not a target
12/09/2013 AT 18:55
M-Sport Ford's lead driver Thierry Neuville admitted to feeling "lost" on his Rally Australia debut.
He still holds fourth at present, 25.6s off the lead but ahead of team-mate Mads Ostberg.
Jari-Matti Latvala's rally is so far proving as tough as he predicted.
A spin on the Tuckers Nob stage that opened the morning means the VW driver is back in eighth behind team-mate Andreas Mikkelsen and M-Sport's Evgeny Novikov.
Rally Australia
Australia set to secure WRC future
19/09/2013 AT 16:35
Rally Australia
Ogier extends lead on 'perfect' day
13/09/2013 AT 06:48