Well we are underway for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup and what a start to the tournament we have had with Day 1 consisting of England v Samoa, and Australia v Fiji.
Let’s have a look over the day.
England 60 – Samoa 6
Well…what a statement from the English.
While some predicted an upset, few if any predicted a score line like this.
England came out firing, dominating possession and keeping Samoa in their end for the majority of the half.
An early chance for England fell short, but earned themselves a penalty and an early 2-0 lead.
Samoa fought back in the middle strongly, but England held them off with some good defence.
Enter Jack Welsby.
A try as well as 2 try assists in a 10 minute period saw the Old Dart up 18-0 and looking like they would run away with it.
Dom Young burning the Samoan defence, and the recipient of some great England ball movement saw him bag a first half double.
Izack Tago intercepting a ball and running 80m for a try had the Samoa team back into it, and were unlucky not to be just 6 points behind at the half after this Crichton effort.
Samoa came out with intent in the second half, unfortunately it didn’t last long with Watkins scoring for England taking the score to 24-6.
Milford with a late hit saw him spend 10mins on the pine, and tries to Herbie Farnworth, George Williams, Thomas Burgess and a double to Elliott Whitehead saw England run away with the massive win.
NOTE: Some injury concerns for Samoa with both Braden Hamlin-Uele off in the opening minutes with a leg injury, and Tyrone May carried off after an injury early in the second half.
Australia 42 – Fiji 8
Despite the score line, the Fijians came to play against the Aussies.
Yes the Aussies were a bit rusty in the first 20mins, but the Bati went toe to toe with them and showed their worth, scoring the first try in the opening minutes, before fatigue, ill discipline, and the mighty force of the Kangaroos ran them down in the second half.
Jeremiah Nanai hit back for the Aussies in the 15th minute, before the left side attack led by a man of the match performance from Cameron Munster, handed tries to Addo-Carr (2), Crichton, and Mitchell to get the Aussies back on top.
Harry Grant was also pushing for MOTM honours after coming on the field, kicking a 40/20 to set up a try of his own, before setting up the final try for Josh Addo-Carr to bag a double.
James Tedesco with an amazing 18 tackle breaks and scoring a try.
Turuva scoring a late try for the Bati which was the first time in a World Cup since 2013 the Aussies have conceded more than 8 points.