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    (Original post by Chris22)
    England gave it their best, but I got the feeling that the Aussie's weren't at there best and were there for the taking. The Slater try just before half time was a bad one to concede. We now have a tougher route, with a potential semi final against New Zealand, but play like we did today, and we'll go ok.

    George Burgess was very impressive, and with Graham and O Loughlin to return, there's plenty to be positive about. A good crowd of 45,000 there too. Italy looked impressive, and they could get to the QF stage on their performances over the last couple of weeks.

    I'd give England every chance of beating New Zealand in the Semi-Finals, they've done so in the four nations and the team seems certainly capable based on what we saw yesterday with what could be described as an understrength team.

    Fair to say Italy could well prove to be the surprise package of the competition this year.
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    Two absolutely fantastic games in Group B today. I said before we got underway this could be the most competitive Group of the tournament and from what's happened today I still agree with that. It wouldn't surprise me if either of PNG, Samoa or France did go on and have a deep run in the tournament.
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    What a match New Zealand vs Samoa was! Had everything from unbelievable skill, **** ups, a big and passionate crowd. And the huge determined runs back from kick offs, with no regard for their safety was brilliant. Envious of those who got to see it live, what a cracking advert for rugby league, here's hoping tomorrows game will be a good one too!
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    Where are South Africa?
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    South Africa failed to qualify for the tournament. Although they have a fantastic Rugby Union side, their Rugby League side is no where near as good. They have applied to host the 2017 tournament, but that will probably be awarded to Australia/New Zealand.
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    Have tickets for England v Ireland on Saturday. Can't wait. Should be interesting too as I'm off with my family who are Irish where as I'm English

    New Zealand to win the whole thing for me though.
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    Got Premier TV so I can watch all the games! Favourite so far of Samoa and NZ, looking forward to Tonga's performance later
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    Absolutely cracking game!
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    Great result for Scotland last night to beat Tonga. Sunday's game against Italy could well be the group decider now.


    What's everyone's take on the format by the way?
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    Rugby League was founded in the North of England (Huddlesfield), so I view this as embracing history & giving back to fans who have sustained the sport through out the years.

    While this would have been an excellent opportunity to grow the sport in this country you only have to look at Super League to see that the franchise systemis restricting the chances of growth and expansion happening naturally.

    Also the last thing the organisers would want is half empty stadiums for matches in cities who did not care about the game.
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    Oh dear Ireland...
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    (Original post by forgottenlife)
    Rugby League was founded in the North of England (Huddlesfield), so I view this as embracing history & giving back to fans who have sustained the sport through out the years.

    While this would have been an excellent opportunity to grow the sport in this country you only have to look at Super League to see that the franchise systemis restricting the chances of growth and expansion happening naturally.

    Also the last thing the organisers would want is half empty stadiums for matches in cities who did not care about the game.
    I agree with this entirely. I said back during the last World Cup that it would be better for games to be spread around the 14 Super League grounds with the exception of Wales, the opening game and the Finals.

    I think they've got the spread of venues right this year unlike 2000.
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    Two of the QF spots decided now with Australia and New Zealand both winning. Disappointing that Ireland and France didn't score though.

    Big games coming up for both Wales and Scotland tomorrow, if Wales lose then they're out and if Scotland lose then it's going to take them relying on Italy slipping up against Tonga.
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    Slaughter game, good game for england
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    Why was the opening game held in Wales though?

    And there seems to be a lot of English and Australian players playing for other countries.
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    (Original post by TRS-T)
    Why was the opening game held in Wales though?

    And there seems to be a lot of English and Australian players playing for other countries.
    The opening match was a double header which included Wales v Italy in the cross group match. Starting at Cardiff wasn't a surprise if they were going to include a double header involving two of the Host countries. The 1995 World Cup started at Wembley too.
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    Disappointing from Wales this afternoon, seemed that as the USA got into a lead the fight went out of them and that they had too much to do. Credit to the USA though, they've played well in their first two games - and not even the Aussies can claim to have never lost a World Cup Finals match

    One down, Thirteen to go.

    If Tonga defeat the Cook Islands on Tuesday then the USA will secure qualification for the quarter-finals ahead of their final game on Thursday against Scotland.
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    38-4 to Samoa in Group B tonight meaning Papua New Guinea must defeat New Zealand on Friday to have any chance of reaching the quarter-finals
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    Shocked that the USA are on the verge of qualification, fantastic for them, but Wales have had a very disappointing tournament. Scotland going well too, Group C is shaping up nicely, one game to go (two for Tonga), and all three teams could still qualify to have a crack at New Zealand (I think?)
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    Looking forward to going to the Scotland vs USA game, looking like it'll be slightly more evenly matched than I thought it would be!
 
 
 
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