Rugby League World Cup 2022: is England v Samoa on TV? Date, kick-off, venue and squads ahead of first fixture

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We are now just a few days away from the opening fixture in the 2022 Rugby League World Cup as England take on Samoa

The biggest Rugby League World Cup is set to begin in just a few days time after it was postponed from last year. The 2017 champions Australia and New Zealand both pulled out of the proposed tournament citing “player welfare and safety concerns” related to Covid-19 but now 16 teams are undergoing their final preparations ahead of the first round of matches.

For the first time, the women’s and wheelchair World Cups will also take place alongside the men’s and the tournament’s chief executive Jon Dutton has said: “This is international rugby league’s moment to shine.

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“We are about to stage the biggest tournament in the sport’s 127-year history. We welcome the sport’s greatest contemporary athletes and the most diverse playing population to have ever assembled in the sport.

“It is fundamentally important that we succeed - it means more people will engage with the sport, there will be more visibility across the globe and more opportunities will be provided by these special moments.”

Sam Tomkins will captain England as they host the tournament for the first time since 2013 and has said: “I am proud to be English, very proud to put on the jersey and for us to host it in front of our own people is a massive opportunity for us as players with a wider view to grow the sport in the country. Hopefully a successful England team can be the catalyst for that.”

With just a few days to go until England face Samoa, here is all you need to know ahead of the fixture...

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Sam Tomkins for England against Australia in 2019Sam Tomkins for England against Australia in 2019
Sam Tomkins for England against Australia in 2019 | Getty Images

When is England v Samoa?

England will play their first fixture in the Rugby League World Cup on Saturday 15 October 2022. The game is scheduled to kick off at 2.30pm BST at St James’ Park, Newcastle.

Normally the home to Newcastle United, St James’ Park is the oldest football stadium in the North East of England and outside of London is the second biggest sports ground in England. It has a capacity for 52,409.

The last time these two sides met was in 2017 with England beating Samoa 30-10. They also won at the previous meeting in 2014 which saw England win 32-26.

How to watch England v Samoa on TV

All of the Rugby League World Cup fixtures will be available to watch on the BBC. BBC One will begin coverage at 1.15pm ahead of the 2.30pm kick-off time.

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For those unable to watch on TV, BBC iPlayer will also be streaming the match on their website. Viewers will need a TV License and free account to watch on iPlayer.

What are the odds?

England have been marked as massive outsiders in this tournament with the odds placing them as fifth favourites along with Tonga to make the final. However, the odds suggest that their first match against Samoa should be tightly fought:

(All odds courtesey of Skybet)

  • England to win: 6/5
  • Draw: 16/1
  • Samoa to win: 8/11

Who are in the squads?

  • England: Andy Ackers, Joe Batchelor, John Bateman, Tom Burgess, Mike Cooper, Herbie Farnworth, Ryan Hall, Chris Hill, Morgan Knowles, Matty Lees, Tommy Makinson, Michael McIlorum, Mike McMeeken, Mikolaj Oledzki, Kai Pearce-Paul, Victor Radley, Marc Sneyd, Luke Thompson, Sam Tomkins, Kallum Watkins, Jack Welsby, Elliott Whitehead, George Williams, Dom Young.

  • Samoa: Josh Alouai, Fa’amanu Brown, Stephen Crichton, Mathew Feagai, Braden Hamlin-Uele, Chanel Harris-Tavita, Royce Hunt, Oregon Kaufusi, Spencer Leniu, Danny Levi, Jarome Luai, Taylan May, Tyrone May, Anthony Milford, Josh Papali’i, Junio Paulo, Jaydn Su’a, Joseph Suau’ali’i, Hamiso Tabuai-Difow, Izack Tago, Martin Taupa’u, Brain To’o, Kelma Tuilagi.

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