IT WAS wonderful to see an England rugby league side turn on the style in an international – but a bit of perspective needs to be retained.
The 30-10 win over the Exiles at Warrington’s Halliwell Jones Stadium was easily the most convincing performance the home side has produced in this short-lived series, but to suggest that this means our World Cup chances have been meaningfully enhanced is a little optimistic.
Given that the Exiles had come out on top in 2011, by 16-12 at Headingley, and then on aggregate 42-38 over two games last year in St Helens and Huddersfield, to win in such an emphatic manner does point to distinct progress.
However, and this is not to decry the abilities of the Exiles team, these will not be the Australian or New Zealand players England will be facing come the World Cup in October and November.
Whichever way the Rugby Football League package things, the truth of the matter is that the World Cup final will be contested by either Australia, New Zealand or England – and it is the home nation who have the biggest task in ensuring they are involved on Saturday, November 30, at Old Trafford.
And remember this win was secured without the services of our own ‘exiles’, the likes of James Graham, the Burgess brothers and Gareth Widdop who are plying their trade in the NRL.
And if the current England side really are as impressive as some pundits reckoned after the win at Warrington, are our men from ‘down under’ a useful addition?