Round 1 Round Up

There were some great games over the weekend with every team keen to make a positive start to the competition. The class shown by all was a real testament to the game. Even with a few big scores, no team really played badly, and a tight game between France and Lebanon the only real contest of round 1.

Australia vs England: Australia saw of England 18-4 with tries from; Gillett, Slater and Dugan for the Aussies. England only managing one try in 80 minutes and that came down the right hand wing from, in my opinion man of the match, Jermaine Mcgilvary. Both teams showed signs of rust in the first half, failing to capitalise on good field position, sending the sides into the sheds at the half at 10-4 to Australia. Overall it was a good showing but leaving both sides with room for improvement in the coming weeks.

PNG vs Wales: The Kumuls dispatched Wales in clinical fashion tries from; Mead(3), Olam, MacDonald, Ottio, Aiton, Martin(2) and Albert for PNG saw them race out to a 50 point lead with Martin converting 5 attempts at the sticks successfully. Wales would grab a consolation try for their efforts from rising talent Regan Grace but the The Kumuls run out 50-6 victors in their opening game.

New Zealand vs Samoa: The game that was dubbed to be the tightest of the weekend, never came to be, The Kiwi's proving to be too much for Samoa. Tries from Rapana, Nikorima, Takairangi, Johnson, Asofa-Solomona, Tuivasa-Sheck and Liu for New Zealand with johnson converting 5 out of 7 attempts. Samoa's points coming from Maumalo and Paulo, both tries failed to be converted. Final score 38-8.

Fiji vs USA: Fiji took no chances against the USA and went for the throat early, racing out to a 14 point lead on the ten minute mark. The US never showed any signs of recovering, they did make the score sheet, with tries from Shipway and Vavai, both were converted. This would only be a momento for the Tomohawk's as Fiji ran riot. Fiji scoring 11 tries in total, Naiqama(2), Vunivalu(2), Milne(2), Uate, Hayne, Evans and Raiwaliu, the scorers. 7 out of 11 were converted successfully.

Ireland vs Italy: The Wolfhounds shocked the Rugby League World with an incredibly impressive win over Italy. The Azzurri were clear favourites with bookies predicting a winning margin of 14 points or greater in favour of the Italians. The next 80 minutes would be a day to remember for everyone in The Irish camp. Tries from Kay(2), Amor, Mccarthy-Scarsbrook, King and Michael Morgan saw The Irish make light work of their first opponents. Liam Finn having a near perfect record converting 6 out of 7 attempts. Italy were a very off the boil side, only finding the stripe twice, Milone and Castellaro the scorers with Mantellato kicking both goals. The match finishing 36-12 to the men in green.

Lebanon vs France: This fixture was unpredictable and a difficult game to call in either sides favour. Lebanon were the more consistent side in this game, which was littered with handling errors, The Lebanese relying heavily on their NRL talent to carry them through this game. Regardless of this Lebanon would come away with a historical first World Cup win, leaving The French to lick their wounds. The Scorers for Lebanon were; Robinson(2), Layoun, Moses and Doueihi. Moses kicking 5 out of 6 attempts at the uprights and a drop goal. France will leave this fixture extremely disappointed and worrying for their world cup lives, knowing they have to beat England and Australia to stay in the competition. Ader(2) and Cardace were the scorers in this underwhelming French performance with Barthau converting 3 out of 4 kicks. Final score Lebanon 29 France 18.

Scotland vs Tonga: Tonga ripped Scotland apart mercilessly at Barlow Park. Scotland looked to be keeping the fixture competitive, up until the fourth Tongan try, which seemed to deplete morale. Tonga came up with a lot of errors in the first 20 minutes, but as soon as that rust was shaken off, the usual big men punching holes, we are used to seeing resumed, regular service. The Tongan scorers were Jennings(3), Tupou(2), Hingano, Terepo, Manu and Jason Taumalolo.  Tonga converting 7 out of the 9 2 pointers. Scotland put in a gutsy showing and did show real potential. Danny Brough's kicking game was as influential as ever and Lewis Tierney running for 122 metres out of fullback. Addy was the only man to make it onto the scoreboard for The Braveheart's with Brough missing the conversion, the contest finishing up 50 points to 4 in favour of Tonga.



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