Poms in Oz: New Rhino Achurch could make England debut
Leeds Rhinos’ new signing Mitch Achurch could play for England in next year’s Rugby League World Cup.
The 24-year old Penrith Panther is joining the Rhinos from next season, and qualifies for England on the back of his mother’s heritage. The second rower made his first grade debut earlier this season for the Panthers against Parramatta Eels.
But Achurch said he still hasn’t decided on which country he wants to represent.
He said: “My first focus is to do my best for Leeds Rhinos, but obviously with my heritage that would make me available for England and the World Cup next year.
“There is a long way to go between now and then and I need to be playing well, but training and playing with world class players can only help me develop as a player.”
Melbourne Storm won their second consecutive game coming from 10-0 behind at half time to win 24-16 against the Gold Coast Titans.
Gareth Widdop’s contribution to the match was a try in the 75th minute that secured the win for the Storm after coming through a five game losing sequence.
Widdop was the final recipient of a last tackle play that went through six pairs of hands before the Englishman touched down across the Titans’ try line.
The Titans led through Steve Michaels and Ben Ridge, before the Storm came out in the second half to put the cleaners through the Gold Coast side.
Billy Slater, Cooper Cronk and Ryan Hoffman all scored inside the third quarter of that match, before David Mean levelled things up with 10 minutes remaining.
However Widdop’s try sealed the match for the Melbourne side. They sit four points behind Canterbury Bulldogs on the NRL ladder.
South Sydney were hammered 23-6 against last season’s Premiers Manly Sea Eagles.
Sam Burgess’ try was the only thing Rabbitohs fans had to cheer about in the third minute of the game. Adam Reynolds’ kick was caught cleanly by Chris McQueen, before offloading to the most famous Burgess brother down under.
However the Rabbitohs were subsequently hammered with two tries from Jorge Taufua either side of half time giving the Sea Eagles the edge.
Dean Whare, David Williams and Matt Ballin all scored for Manly, who narrowed South Sydney’s lead over them on the ladder to just two points.
Jack Reed was once again back in the Broncos side, but had little to cheer about as the Broncos were defeated 22-14 against Canterbury.
The Bulldogs were missing the injured James Graham, but they were still too strong for the Broncos despite falling behind inside the opening 10 minutes.
Ben Te’o and Corey Norman both scored early tries, and it wasn’t until just before half time when the Bulldogs got on the scoreboard.
Josh Jackson gave the half time score line some respect for the home side, but the second half was all Canterbury as they continue to stay top of the NRL.
Martin Taupau’s try in the second half got the ball rolling for the Bulldogs before Ben Barba’s two tries sealed the win for the Bulldogs.
Chris Heighington saw his side defeat St Geroge Illawarra 22-12at Allianz Stadium.
A Tim Moltzen hat trick sealed the deal for the Tigers, who continue to challenge for a play off spot.
Brett Morris and Mitch Rein put the Dragons ahead early in the match, before Moltzen scored the first of his three tries.
Liam Fulton added a try for the Tigers just after the break, but Moltzen was in fine form and Morris’ second try wasn’t enough to keep the Dragons in the match.