Australia v Scotland RLWC2021

World Cup holders Australia and Italy will go toe to toe in St Helens on Saturday night in the final game of Group B.

Mal Meninga returns to the ground of his former club as the Kangaroos look to seal top spot in the World Cup group.

The Aussies have looked dominant after crushing Fiji and then battering Scotland.

Italy beat Scotland in its first game but were smashed by Fiji, and will present an easy challenge for the green and gold at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

Meninga has again rotated his squad, keeping his players fit as they ready for the knockout stages.


Matty Burton has been named in the 19-man team, after making his debut against the Bravehearts, along with Nathan Cleary.

With Cam Munster rested, Cleary will partner Daly Cherry-Evans in the halves for the first time.

Josh Addo-Carr, Harry Grant, Angus Crichton and Jake Trbojevic have also been left out, with Reuben Cotter, Jeremiah Nanai and Murray Taulagi all returning.

Latrell Mitchell is also back in, after missing Scotland, and could feature at fullback depending if James Tedesco is rested.

Tedesco starred for Italy at the 2013 and 2017 World Cups and is keen to feature against his former nation.

The Italians need to spring the mother of all upsets if they are to stay alive in this tournament.


They will be led by captain and lock Nathan Brown, a former Kangaroo, with direction coming from the spine of Luke Polselli, Jack Campagnolo,  Radean Robinson and Dean Parata.

The Azzurri and the Kangaroos have met once before, 62 years ago when the Aussies won 67-22 in Treviso.

Fite

John Davidson
John is a freelance journalist who has been writing about rugby league for the past decade. He covered the 2013 and 2017 World Cups, has appeared on TV and radio, and been published in The I-Paper, The Guardian, The Sun, The Mirror, League Express, Inside Sport magazine and Big League. He writes regularly for Forty-20 magazine, League Weekly and co-hosts the podcasts By the Balls and Six To Go.