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Rugby League World Cup: Team of the tournament

With the Rugby League World Cup final between Australia and Samoa set to take place on Saturday, we take a look at the team of the tournament.

WhatAustralia v Samoa, Rugby League World Cup final
WhereOld Trafford, Manchester
When16:00, Saturday 19th November
How to watchBBC
OddsAustralia 1/12, Samoa 6/1

There have been some outstanding individual performances throughout the delayed competition and understandably it’s the reigning champions Australia and fellow finalists Samoa who dominate the line-up.

1. Joseph Manu (New Zealand)

Starting at full-back, Joseph Manu enjoyed a strong tournament with New Zealand on their way to the semi-finals.

Manu scored three tries during the competition but was unable to prevent Australia from securing a 16-14 win in the semi-final at Elland Road.

2. Brian To'o (Samoa)

Making the cut on the right-wing, Brian To'o has been an influential figure in helping Samoa reach the final, in which they are underdogs at 6/1 to win.

To'o has scored four tries in the competition so far, including a crucial score in the thrilling 20-18 quarter-final victory over fellow Pacific Islanders Tonga at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

A notable mention should go out to England's Dom Young, who despite scoring nine tries through the competition missed out on selection.

3. Tim Lafai (Samoa)

Moving into the centres and it’s a powerful Samoan duo who make the cut, starting with Salford Red Devils star Tim Lafai.

The 31-year-old enjoyed an excellent World Cup and bagged himself a brace of tries in the biggest upset as Samoa beat hosts England 27-26 in the semi-finals.

Lafai will be looking to add to his tally of five tries on Saturday in the final at Old Trafford.

4. Stephen Crichton (Samoa)

Another player to score two tries in the semi-final win over Shaun Wane’s England, Stephen Crichton joins Lafai in the centres.

Not only a threat in his running play, Crichton is the competition’s top goal scorer with 27 goals through the 2021 World Cup so far.

5. Josh Addo-Carr (Australia)

Arguably the player of the tournament so far, Josh Addo-Carr has enjoyed a World Cup to remember on the wing for the Kangaroos.

With 12 tries in the competition already, Addo-Carr has all but guaranteed himself the top tryscorer prize this year.

6. Jarome Luai (Samoa)

A player who has been pulling the strings for Samoa over the last month, Jarome Luai has been outstanding in the half-backs for the Pacific Islanders.

Luai will have to have another big game if Samoa are to cause an upset in the final, for which they are 4/5 with a +18.5 handicap on Saturday.

7. George Williams (England)

One of the three England players to make the cut, George Williams impressed in the half-backs for the hosts on their way to the semi-finals.

Wearing the armband on a number of occasions for his country, Williams has emerged as a leader in the England set-up and will have been devastated by the semi-final loss to the Samoans.

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8. Tom Burgess (England)

A powerful presence in the England pack, Tom Burgess was one of the standout forwards for the men in white over the last month.

Having only scored three tries for his country before the tournament, Burgess went on to bag four tries during the competition.

9. Edwin Ipape (Papua New Guinea)

The only player to make the team of the tournament from outside of the semi-finalists, Edwin Ipape was outstanding for Papua New Guinea.

In a competitive position in the hooker role, Leigh Leopards star Ipape impressed as he helped PNG reach the quarter-finals, only to lose to England.

10. Junior Paulo (Samoa)

Another man-mountain in the Samoan ranks, Junior Paulo was a physical presence throughout the tournament.

Despite getting a yellow card in the semi-final, it was not enough to help England over the line and Paulo still makes the cut for the team in the World Cup.

11. Cameron Murray (Australia)

A rising star of Australian rugby league, Cameron Murray really announced himself on the big stage with the Kangaroos this autumn.

Scoring a vital try in the narrow win over New Zealand, Murray should have a big part to play on Saturday, with Australia at 3/1 to win by 16-20 points in Manchester.

12. Liam Martin (Australia)

Named the man of the match in the victory over the Kiwis in Leeds, Liam Martin has had some big performances for Australia.

Another Aussie with a bright future for the national side, the 25-year-old could be a key player for the Kangaroos for years to come.

13. Victor Radley (England)

Concluding with another Englishman, Victor Radley took the transition to international rugby league in his stride.

Making his debut for England at the World Cup, the Sydney Roosters star showed why he can be an important figure for the national side going forward.


14. Harry Grant (Australia)

15. Sunia Turuva (Fiji)

16. Keaon Koloamatangi (Tonga)

17. James Fisher-Harris (New Zealand)

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