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Kangaroos still the team to beat heading into the Rugby League WC Quarter Finals

Posted on 14/11 by Joe Gann

Kangaroos still the team to beat heading into the Rugby League WC Quarter Finals

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Perhaps the most eagerly anticipated Rugby League World Cup of all time has so far lived up to its billing, with the group stage producing some exhilarating action.

The headline story was undoubtedly Tonga’s stunning upset of New Zealand, with the tiny island nation becoming the first tier two country to conquer a tier one ranked team in competition history.

That result sent shockwaves through the established order and a tournament that can usually be mapped out from the outset has been turned on its head.

The latter stages now have a welcome air of unpredictability, with the Tongans priced at just $1.02 to claim a place in the last four.

The Kiwis’ ability to bounce back from that shattering defeat will be central to their hopes of regaining the crown they lost to Australia four years ago. The English remain at a tempting $8.00 to land what would be their first World Cup success since Great Britain split into four nations; Wayne Bennett’s side has been making steady progress since the opening day loss to hosts Australia.

Elsewhere, Australia justified their reputation as pre-tournament favourites as they breezed through a fixture list that contained England, France and Lebanon; the Kangaroos are $1.30 to claim an eleventh championship win. Pool A was the scene of another landmark event this year, as Lebanon recorded their first ever competition win, claiming the scalp of the French in their opening game – a victory which helped the Cedars achieve a place in this weekend’s knockout round.

The tournament continues this weekend with the Quarter Final stage taking place across both sides of the Tasman:

Australia ($1.01) v Samoa ($21.00) - Darwin
Tonga ($1.02) v Lebanon ($15.00) - Christchurch
New Zealand ($1.16) v Fiji ($5.30) - Wellington
England ($1.16) v Papua New Guinea ($5.30) - Melbourne

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