Hall says England can build on opening performance
England players look dejected after the defeat.
England and Leeds Rhinos star Ryan Hall says Wayne Bennett’s team can build on their opening day performance as they went toe-to-toe with Australia in Melbourne before losing out 18-4 to the holders.
Speaking after the game, Hall admitted he had mixed emotions from the result having shown they were more than a match for the Australians but ultimately lost out again to the Green and Golds. He commented, “It was a weird one. We really wanted to win but it is a long journey, we know in this World Cup we don’t need to win every game but win the ones that count. We didn’t play to our full potential which is some consolation because we did push them for long periods.We need to make it count if we get to the chance to play them again in the Final.”
The game was the opening match of the World Cup and Hall admitted it was a special occasion to be involved in. He added, “It was a high quality game. There were a couple of errors there that let us down but the intensity was massive and I will definitely feel the bumps and bruises in the morning.
“It is always a massive honour to play for England and that is enhanced when it is on enemy territory. The fact it was the first game of a World Cup in Australia is probably one I will take more from when I retire and look back on,” added Hall.
England got off to a perfect start with a try from Huddersfield’s Jermaine McGillvary. Before that, the pre-match involved a new ritual from the Australians as a poem called Rise was read out and performed to by the home side. Hall enjoyed the experience. He added, “Australia are embracing their aboriginal heritage and their history like we see with other nations around the world. It was nice to see but made the start a bit tricky because it was something that had never been done before a game against them.
“We got off to a great start but I thought our second half was probably our best half albeit they won it 8-0. They got a try from a break away when we were chasing the game and did something we wouldn’t normally do. I had a chance when it was 10-4 to get a second try for us but couldn’t get the ball in my grasp probably. I am excited about the up coming weeks and hopefully we will be meeting them again in the final,” added Hall.
The Rhinos winger thanked all the England fans who had made the journey to Melbourne to support the team and said it was nice to see some Rhinos shirts in the crowd. He added, “I spotted quite a few Rhinos shirts in the crowd including those worn by Australians as well which was a nice surprise when I was going around afterwards signing autographs and posing for photos. I spotted our corporate guests too and it was good to see familiar faces when you are so far from home.”