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Derek Beaumont brutally hits out at rugby union

This afternoon, rugby league fans will see Wigan Warriors, Warrington Wolves and Leeds Rhinos stars take to the field for England as they battle against Tonga in the first game since Shaun Wane’s side suffered World Cup heartache in the semi-final against Samoa.

Still a great game, it was a match that ebbed and flowed from start to finish.

Heroics by Herbie Farnworth looked like it might do enough for England but was matched by what Stephen Crichton got up to for Samoa.

In golden point, Crichton nailed a drop goal that won the game for Samoa to break English hearts.

There was similar heartache for England Rugby Union last night.

Inspired by the son of Wigan Warriors legend Andy Farrell, Owen Farrell, and defending for their lives under the guidance of Leeds Rhinos legend Kevin Sinfield, England had one foot in the World Cup Final as they led 15-6 after a Farrell drop goal.

But South Africa battled back to snatch it 16-15.

For rugby league fans, it was a game that divided them. Some wanted to see England do well, others wanted to see Sinfield achieve success and others wanted to see England fail to give our sport the chance to be seen as superior.

Of course the argument about entertainment factor was also raised and this was something raised by Leigh Leopards owner Derek Beaumont.

He implored fans to turn off from the union and watch England rugby league today.

He said:

“For anyone still yawning after being hypnotised to sleep by foot tennis with a rugby ball. I have the perfect anecdote! Watch England Rugby League  take on Tonga  at 2.30 this afternoon for fast explosive and entertaining rugby!”

England are set for two debutants with Harry Newman starting at centre for the first time whilst Hull KR stand-off Mikey Lewis will join Harry Smith in the halves due to the suspension of George Williams.

Williams’ absence also means that Jack Welsby will captain the side and become England’s youngest ever skipper adding to his already impressive resume.

The game kicks off at 14:30 but BBC coverage begins at 14:05 on BBC One.

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