BLOG: England Universities through to World Cup knock out

Day 7

England Universities Rugby League squad member, Sam Druce, continues the blog from the Student World Cup in Sydney.

On Tuesday night had a nice surprise, as we went out for dinner we were joined by the Burgess twins, Tom and George.

They had dinner with us and chatted about their experiences and what being an England player means to them. It was a fantastic experience, and they were incredibly encouraging and supportive of all of us.

On Wednesday we faced a strong Scotland team who were as of yet, unbeaten. We felt confident in ourselves to go out and do the job.

We went out and gave our best performance of the World Cup so far, leading 18-6 at half time and later going on to win 30-20.

Unfortunately due to the draw of the crossover games we didn’t top the group due to points difference, however did make it to the semi final against Australia.

The team are really looking forward to this knock-out game, especially after the intense recovery we’ve been through today.

We are all excited to get a win tomorrow and hope to make it to the World Cup final!

Day 5

Coventry Bears player and Newcastle University student, Jason Bass, reviews the England Universities side’s first two World Cup games in Sydney.

Our World Cup campaign kicked off after the opening ceremony on Saturday with a tough game against defending champions, Australia.

The 54-10 result was disappointing but we were against a strong opposition and there were positives to be taken from a good second half performance from the boys.

The whole camp was frustrated and wanted to make amends, so after some intense recovery and analysis, we got ready for the next game.

Less than 48 hours from the Australia game we emerged a new side against Wales with a quick start in some intense Southern Hemisphere sun.

We defended very well and only conceded four points. Our attack was strong in parts but stuttered by some handling errors when pushing the last pass.

The day after we enjoyed a rest day which included a visit to Taronga Zoo to see some native wildlife.

We’re now are looking forward to giving a strong performance tomorrow and securing a semi-final spot against Scotland.

Day 1

As the England Universities Rugby League team prepares to take on Australia in their first game, Sam Druce blogs about the Student World Cup journey so far.

The Leeds Beckett student has been receiving core services from the university, which is also his TASS Delivery Site, since September.

The 6am meet at Manchester Airport was a bit early for some, but team spirit was good even that early in the morning.

The flight to Sydney was long and tiresome and many of us aren’t used to that long of a journey, but we stuck to our jet lag plan quite well.

Our first impression of Australia was how nice it was in terms of their weather, even though its winter, it’s still warm and sunny, except when the sun goes down!

Preparations for the Australia game started 12 hours after arrival, by completing a session at 8am the following morning, after which we toured Sydney.

The following day we went to Penrith Panthers‘ training facilities where we went on a guided tour and we were blown away with the standard of the facilities.

After the tour we completed a gym session followed by an opposed training game with the Panthers JETs team. This took its toll on the boys as they are all very tired from the jet lag still and recovery is imperative.

Yesterday evening we had a really good team session in Penrith building toward the World Cup opener on Friday.