Leeds Rhinos legend says England were “too intense” at the start of the World Cup

As is the case when a team gets knocked out of a World Cup, since England’s defeat to Samoa in the Rugby League World Cup semi-finals last week, there has been something of an inquest into what went wrong.

This only intensified at the Rugby League World Cup Final yesterday as Samoa lost to Australia 30-10 leading people to question why England weren’t there.

Speaking on BBC, Jon Wilkin revealed a damning stat from the loss to Samoa that England only completed one of their last eight sets in the semi.

This led to Leeds Rhinos legend Jamie Peacock claiming that England had been too intense early in the tournament.

“They only completed one out of their last eight sets in that semi-final, that I think comes down to me to being too intense at the start of the tournament,” Peacock said.

“In a Rugby League World Cup, it’s a long tournament. The Australians mentioned it. You’ve got to build that intensity as you go through it.”

However, former St Helens man Wilkin felt that this wasn’t an excuse based on what he had seen from Australia: “Australia are a different beast. They went through a very similar process and produced one of the best performances you’ll see against New Zealand.”

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