Rugby League World Cup: Ex-coach Iestyn Harris disappointed with Wales attitude

Wales head coach John Kear reflects on their 72-6 defeat to Fiji in the Rugby League World Cup.
Rugby League World Cup on the BBC
Venues: Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea
Dates: 27 October to 2 December
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Ex-coach and player Iestyn Harris has criticised Wales' performance in their World Cup-record 72-6 loss to Fiji.

Harris, 41, whose Wales side lost all three of their 2013 World Cup games, admits John Kear's side were never expected to beat Fiji in Townsville.

But the former Great Britain stand-off questioned the current side's attitude.

"I was just disappointed with the ease Fiji scored long-distance tries, they didn't really get any stoppage of momentum throughout the game," he said.

"There's other nations that have got similar squads as Wales that have done a lot better with their attitude.

"It's not a huge criticism because I understand it's a difficult position to be in and I've ultimately been in that position myself, so just looking on as a Welshman and a fan it's disappointment.

"There's no disputing there was a gulf in class between the two sides and physicality as well.

"I don't think we expected to win that game with the quality that Fiji had in their ranks, but the disappointment came from when you wear a Welsh shirt you've got to give absolutely everything you've got.

"We're not always going to beat the bigger nations but you make a nuisance of yourself and you make it difficult for them to get into any fluency, and you make it difficult for them to get over the top of you as a team."

Wales lost their opening game 50-6 against co-hosts Papua New Guinea in a sweltering Port Moresby, and will end their tournament against Ireland in Perth on Sunday.

The Irish have to beat Wales and rely on an unlikely USA win over PNG earlier on Sunday to progress to the quarter-finals after losing narrowly 14-6 to PNG and beating Italy 36-12 in their opening match.

You can follow the fortunes of your favourite team with live match notifications sent straight to your phone or tablet via the BBC Sport app. Line-up, kick-off, score, half-time and full-time options are available for all teams participating at the World Cup.


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