Jamaica and Lebanon are due to meet in #RLWC2021 on Sunday in what will be a crucial game in Group C.
The Cedars (1-1) need to win to have a chance of advancing to the quarterfinal rounds by finishing second in the Group, while for the Reggae Warriors (0-2), it will be their final opportunity to get a W in the tournament.
In Round 2 of the preliminary round, Jamaica made history by scoring their first-ever Rugby League World Cup try in a heavy loss to New Zealand, and in doing so, gained notoriety around the rugby league world. While they can’t qualify for the playoffs, Sunday will offer the Reggae Warriors a chance to create even more history with a victory over Lebanon, though it will be a tall order.
That is something that Jamaica head coach Romeo Monteith is well aware of.
“Our approach for every game is to focus on what we can control,” Monteith tells Rugby League Planet. “Playing against Lebanon will be no different.
“We want to encourage creativity on the ball and maximum effort defending both the middle and the edges.”
He says they have no significant injuries from the game against the Kiwis going into this matchup, so they won’t have to change their approach to the contest.
“Lebanon are a good team as we have seen over their first two games. They are efficient on both sides of the ball and play attractively.”
In the other locker room, Lebanon’s head coach Michael Cheika is aware of the challenge ahead for his team and acknowledges they will be under some pressure.
“We’ve got to finish the job off to qualify,” he says. “How we prepare before the game will decide if we go through to the quarters or not. It’s not a done deal at all.
“I’ve been in too many of these to even think like that. Whether it’s World Cup in rugby union or in European Cups, tournaments where the minute you take your eye off the ball someone’s going to take advantage of that, so there will be no chance of that happening I can tell you.”
The match is scheduled to kick off at 12 noon (BST) on Sunday, which is 7am (ET) 4am (PT) in the US. It will be played at the Leigh Sports Village in Leigh.