*Can Australia take a Tenth Title? *
With the break up of Great Britain, many believe the World Cup is Australia's too lose. They've held the trophy since 1975, having successfully defending it five times. Yet with teams like New Zealand and England getting better all the time, will a sixth defence be too much?
The Kangaroos are easily the favourites. As the NRL continues to be the most dominant League worldwide, many believe Australia will coast to their tenth title. The side is filled with players from both the champion Sea Eagles and runners-up Melbourne. Additionally, Coach Ricky Stuart will have the boys primed to make the most out of every match. They'll be lead around the paddock by skipper Darren Lockyer, who's 36-test experience should keep the side well in control. Over all, this side is practically flawless and the opposition will be hard-pressed to find a weakness to exploit.
New Zealand ($7.00)
The Kiwis are first in line to knock off Australia. Many will recall how they humbled Wayne Bennet's Kangaroo side in 2005 to take the Tri-Nations. Now the stakes are even higher and, if they catch the Aussies napping, the Kiwis could easily claim their first trophy. Head Coach Stephen Kearney is an underrated selection for this position. His experience assisting Melbourne mastermind Craig Bellamy will undoubtedly help him guide this talented New Zealand side. With a fearless Nathan Cayless as captain and a healthy Benji Marshall steering the pack, this side is capable of anything.
Although England like to claim they've won the title three times, their only wins have come as Great Britain: combining the best talents of England, Scotland and Wales. Nevertheless, England are a formidable side. With the development of the English Super League, the quality of the English side has continued to grow. They also boast a very experienced team, with enforced Adrian Morley coming back Down Under to lay claim to the title League's Baddest Man. If taken lightly this team will easily remove the Australians from their mantle.
|POOL A||POOL B||POOL C|
|1||Sat, 25 Oct 08||18:55||England v PNG||Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville|
|2||Sun, 26 Oct 08||17:25||Scotland v France||Canberra Stadium|
|3||Sun, 26 Oct 08||19:55||Australia v NZ||Sydney Football Stadium|
|4||Mon, 27 Oct 08||18:55||Tonga v Ireland||Parramatta Stadium|
|5||Fri, 31 Oct 08||18:55||Samoa v Tonga||CUA Stadium, Penrith|
|6||Sat, 1 Nov 08||17:25||Fiji v France||WIN Stadium, Wollongong|
|7||Sat, 1 Nov 08||18:55||New Zealand v PNG||Skilled Park, Gold Coast|
|8||Sun, 2 Nov 08||19:55||Australia v England||Telstra Dome, Melbourne|
|9||Wed, 5 Nov 08||20:00||Scotland v Fiji||Bluetongue Stadium, Central Coast|
|10||Wed, 5 Nov 08||18:00||Ireland v Samoa||Parramatta Stadium|
|11||Sat, 8 Nov 08||16:00||(2-2) v (3-2)||Browne Park, Rockhampton Pool|
|12||Sat, 8 Nov 08||19:55||England v NZ||Energy Australia Stadium, Newcastle|
|13||Sun, 9 Nov 08||17:25||(2-3) v (3-3)||CUA Stadium, Penrith Pool|
|14||Sun, 9 Nov 08||18:55||PNG v Australia||Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville|
|15||Mon, 10 Nov 08||18:55||SF Qualifier Pool (1-2) v (1-3)||Skilled Stadium, Gold Coast|
|16||Sat, 15 Nov 08||18:55||Semi Final (1)||Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane|
|17||Sun, 16 Nov 08||19:55||Semi Final (2)||Sydney Football Stadium|
|18||Sat, 22 Nov 08||18:55||FINAL||Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane|
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last update : 27 November YYYY 06:41