The 2021 Rugby League World Cup is finally here after a year-long Covid-19 delay, with hosts England kicking off their campaign with a superb 60-6 victory over much-fancied Samoa at St James’ Park in Newcastle.
Shaun Wane’s side entered their first major tournament since the previous World Cup, in Australia in 2017, looking to add another moment of sporting pride to the national consciousness in 2022.
But as the Wall of White move to fight their way towards November’s final at Old Trafford, has any previous side gone the distance and lifted the Paul Barriere Trophy?
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Have England ever won the Rugby League World Cup?
In a nutshell, no. As a single nation, England have never won the Rugby League World Cup. The nearest they have come is finishing as runners-up on three occasions – most recently in 2017, when they lost an agonisingly close final to co-hosts Australia by a 6-0 scoreline.
But England have laid their hands on the trophy three previous times under a different identity, with Great Britain the inaugural winners back in 1954, before subsequent triumphs in 1960 and 1972.
The Lions competed in all but one tournament until 1992, before splitting into their home nation components from 1995 – when England made the final once again.
England’s record at the RLWC
|Year||Host||England or Great Britain?||Final Position|
|1968||Australia/New Zealand||Great Britain||3rd|
|1977||Australia/New Zealand||Great Britain||2nd|
|2017||Australia/New Zealand/Papua New Guinea||England||2nd|
*Tournament was by participating nations.