Pryce tagged as star of show

Daily Express - - WORLD CUP RUGBY LEAGUE: - From Martin Richards in Mel­bourne

LEON PRYCE up­set the Aus­tralians with his “Black­pool is bet­ter than Bondi” crack two years ago and he can make them choke on the pitch this week­end, ac­cord­ing to for­mer Great Bri­tain coach Mal Reilly.

“On the front foot Pryce is as danger­ous a player as I’ve ever seen,” said Reilly, who now lives in Aus­tralia. “He would be a star ev­ery week­end in the NRL.

“Aus­tralia haven’t seen the best of Pryce. He is an out­stand­ing player, who is strong in ev­ery facet of the game. He’s a big, tough kid who has a good pass and is very elu­sive. He’s a key player.”

And Reilly be­lieves Aus­tralia are there for the tak­ing.

“Eng­land are in with a real chance. Aus­tralia are a skil­ful out­fit, but if the Eng­land for­wards mus­cle up then they can take the game to Aus­tralia,” he said.

“If Eng­land can score early and gain some con­fi­dence, they can build on that. The game is wide open. I don’t think an Aussie win is a fore­gone con­clu­sion as a lot have pre­dicted. If Eng­land show the same pas­sion as Pa­pua New Guinea last week­end any­thing can hap­pen.”

But Eng­land prop James Gra­ham does not be­lieve the Aus­tralian play­ers think the World Cup is all over.

“Their coach Ricky Stu­art will be re­mind­ing his play­ers of past losses to Eng­land and New Zealand and mak­ing sure it doesn’t hap­pen again,” he said.

“I wouldn’t say the Aussies are ar­ro­gant. They are the best in the world and have proved it week-in, week-out. It’s go­ing to be very dif­fi­cult to beat them in their own back­yard. But if you don’t be­lieve you can beat them it’s point­less be­ing over here.”

Aus­tralia coach Stu­art is ex­pect­ing a far tougher test from Eng­land than they had against New Zealand last Sun­day, es­pe­cially up front.

“Adrian Mor­ley will show his pas­sion and com­mit­ment and that will spread through­out the team. It will be very con­fronta­tional and phys­i­cal,” he said.

PRYCE: Out­stand­ing tal­ent

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