TV figures for England vs Samoa fail to top 2013 Rugby League World Cup semi-final

When Stephen Crichton’s drop goal sailed between the sticks at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday ending England’s Rugby League World Cup campaign and sending Samoa to a first ever final, it was easy to make a comparison.

Less than a decade earlier, again in London only this time at Wembley, English hearts were broken in a home World Cup semi-final.

That time, despite a brilliant try for Sam Burgess created by Leeds Rhinos legend Kevin Sinfield, England were denied a place in a final when Shaun Johnson jinked through for New Zealand to send the Kiwis to the final where they were set to meet Australia at Old Trafford, the same fate which awaits Samoa on Saturday after their victory.

Like in 2013, there had been moments where it looked to be England’s day when Herbie Farnworth scored two great tries the latter of which was created by Warrington Wolves star George Williams and looked to give England the momentum as the game entered Golden Point extra time.

But English errors gave Samoa the advantage and Crichton proved the winner.

At that moment, according to BBC, 2.4 million viewers were watching no doubt disappointed when the one pointer was awarded.

In comparison, when Johnson crossed for the winning try in 2013, 2.6 million viewers were watching on BBC.

A little disappointing to see the numbers drop a little but it is once again a very strong figure as was the 40,000 strong crowd.

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