England captain Sam Tomkins hailed Tommy Makinson after the England winger became only the third player to score five or more tries in a World Cup match.
Makinson put in a five-star display to help England reach the semi-finals of the World Cup after beating Papua New Guinea 46-6 at the DW Stadium in Wigan.
The St Helens flier broke an England try-scoring record with his five-try haul, surpassing the likes of Martin Offiah, Sam Tomkins and Dom Young, who joined the list last week after scoring four against Greece.
Only Valentine Holmes and Josh Addo-Carr, both of Australia, have previously scored five or more tries in a World Cup match.
Tomkins paid tribute to his team-mate Makinson after England’s emphatic victory, saying he epitomises everything an elite modern day winger should be.
“He’s outstanding,” Tomkins said of Makinson. “I’m a fan of Tommy, he’s being doing it for a long time. He’s been winning trophies at Saints, which isn’t nice watching!
“But Tommy is a player who will get accolades for scoring tries, kicking goals and scoring points but it’s the things he does in the backfield like the tough carries. The modern day winger can’t just score tries now, they’ve got to be good coming off their own end and no-one carries the ball as tough as Tommy.
“Tommy will be humble about it as you’d expect but I’m sure when Tommy looks back in years to come and his children look at it they’ll be very proud of what he did today.”
Shaun Wane pays tribute to Tommy Makinson
England coach Shaun Wane also sung the praises of his hard-working winger after the game.
“He’s an outstanding individual and more importantly, he’s a top man,” Wane said.
“He was in a bit of a bad mood because I took some money from him at cards last night! But as a man and a player, he’s fantastic. He’s easy to coach, I’ve coached against him for many years – he’s been the pain in the backside for us (Wigan) as a club – now getting to coach him as the national coach is an absolute dream.”
“We want to do something special”
Makinson was humble in receiving the recognition for his spectacular try scoring efforts. More importantly, he wants to create more history by winning the World Cup with England.
“It’s nice to get the individual bits but to be involved in this group is a dream,” Makinson said.
“To score five tries is good but to be involved in this group and go ahead with what we want to achieve is much, much bigger. It’s a day I’ll always remember, I’ll have that shirt hung up. But there’s plenty more memories to be made, for sure.
“It’s simple just to say I love every day I spend with the lads. Playing with the lads is an honour, we’ve got each other’s back. We have a laugh when we train but when we play it’s down to business and long may it continue.
“We want to do something special. It’s okay talking about it – talk is cheap – we need to go out and do it. We’ve got another week together and we go again.”