England V Greece preview: Here is everything you need to know ahead of Saturday's Rugby League World Cup clash
England take on Greece this weekend in their final group game of the Rugby League World Cup.
The two teams go head-to-head at Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane on Saturday afternoon (K.O. 2.30pm).
Here is some of the key information:
Shaun Wane’s side have made a strong start to the World Cup, winning both of their two group games.
They overcame Samoa with an emphatic 60-6 victory at St James’ Park in the opening match of the tournament, before beating France 42-18 at the University of Bolton Stadium.
Kai Pearce-Paul and Joe Batchelor are both set to make their first appearances of the competition in this weekend’s fixture, while captain Sam Tomkins will be rested.
Greece have lost both of their games so far, but have had some moments to remember.
In their opening group game, Siteni Taukamo and Nicholas Mougios went over for the nation’s first-ever World Cup tries as they were defeated 34-12 by France at Doncaster’s Eco-Power Stadium.
Meanwhile, their second outing ended in a 72-4 loss to Samoa.
Despite their tournament coming to an end, the last few weeks has demonstrated just how far rugby league has come in Greece.
Only a few months ago the sport was banned, with games being played during the night to avoid the authorities, but now with a World Cup under their belts, an exciting future is hopefully ahead.
Shaun Wane took over the England job in 2020, but was disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic during his first few years.
Prior to this role, the former Great Britain prop spent eight season as Wigan Warriors head coach, winning three Super League Grand Finals and one Challenge Cup.
Meanwhile, North Queensland Cowboys assistant coach Steve Georgallis is at the helm for Greece.
As a player he represented several clubs including Eastern Suburbs and Wests Tigers, and enjoyed stints in England with Wakefield Trinity and Warrington Wolves.
He also represented Greece on a number of occasions.
Since retiring, he has been an interim head coach of both Penrith Panthers and Canterbury Bulldogs, among other roles, alongside seeing the growth of his international side.
With Sam Tomkins having a week off, Jack Welsby could feature at fullback.
The 21-year-old has already enjoyed a great start to the tournament, playing in a range of different positions.
Meanwhile, George Williams will wear the captains armband, and will be hoping to build on his first two games as well.
For Greece, the history-making Taukamo will be looking for more tries before the tournament is over.
Wigan Warriors Involvement:
After missing out on the first two games of the tournament, Pearce-Paul will be in action for Wane’s side, and could play in a number of positions during the game.
He is alongside John Bateman and Mike Cooper in the 19-man squad.
Elsewhere in the tournament, Toby King will be in action for Ireland against New Zealand on Friday night at Headingley (7.30pm), while Abbas Miski will represent Lebanon as they take on Jamaica at Leigh Sports Village (K.O. 12pm).
Where to Watch:
The England game is being broadcast live on BBC One, with coverage starting at 1.45pm.
Meanwhile, fans can listen on Radio 5 Sports Extra.