Australia defeat England at Wembley


Australia ran out 36-20 victors over England this afternoon in a scintillating match at Wembley.

England started brightly by applying early pressure on the Australian defensive line in the opening stages. The pressure turned into points on the 10 minute mark when Kevin Sinfield spread the ball out wide to Ryan Hall who touched down superbly in the corner. Sinfield missing the conversion from the touch line.

Australia hit back 5 minutes later when the ball was spread wide to Luke Lewis who managed to squeeze in at the corner for the try. Thurston converting from out wide to give Australia the lead.

When Rangi Chase failed to make touch after opting to kick from the 20-metre restart, the Kangaroos took full advantage with Tony Williams bumping Chris Heighington out of the way to score the try. Thurston converting to extend the Australian lead to 12-4.

England put themselves back into contention just before the half time hooter after Sam Tomkins broke though, passed out the back door to Jack Reed, who put Ryan Hall in to again score superbly in the corner. Sinfield failed with the extras from out wide to leave the the half time score at 12-8 to the Australians.

Greg Inglis restored the Australian’s eight point advantage after the break when he received a long pass from Thurston to easily touch down for the try. Thurston again successful with the boot extended the lead to 18-8.

The Australian’s were lucky to remain with 13 men on the field after Tony Williams‘ high shot on Ben Westwood was adjudged to be off the shoulder by the referee.

Moments later Tom Briscoe was denied by the referee after he determined the winger had made a double movement during the act of scoring despite replays showing that the ball carrying arm didn’t touch the ground.

Australia regained the initiative and extended when Paul Gallen crashed over from short range after receiving a well weighted pass from Cooper Cronk. Thurston again successful with the conversion.

England got themselves back into the game when Jack Reed leapt higher than Darius Boyd to collect a Sinfield high bomb and score near the sticks allowing Sinfield to easily add the extras.

The Australians hit back in the 72nd minute when Thurston intercepted a pass by Chase and raced to the England 20-metre line before being pulled down by Reed. From the resulting play, the ball was spread wide to Boyd who touched down for the try. Thurston adding the extras.

Chris Heighington hit back straight away for England after Tomkins flicked a pass out of the back door for the loose forward to touch down, Sinfield adding the extras.

The Australians had the final say in the came when Chris Lawrence rolled over the line to stretch over and put the ball down. Thurston converted to maintain his 100% record with the boot and leave the final score at 36-20 to Australia.

Whilst the result went in favour of the Australians, England can take heart from the performance and now need a victory over New Zealand next weekend in order to progress to the Four Nations final.

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