1970 Rugby League World Cup
Great Britain and Australia entered the fifth World Cup tournament having won two championships each. Great Britain, the hosts, were clear-cut favourites and appeared to confirm this by winning all three of their pool matches with Frank Myler (captain), Malcolm Reilly, Cliff Watson and Dougie Laughton the undisputed stars.
The other three nations managed just one when each, and it was only Australia’s 47-11 demolition of the Kiwis that got them to the Final via their better points differential. France were particularly unlucky to miss out on playing the Final – they defeated Australia, and only lost to New Zealand (16-15) and Great Britain (6-0) as a result of penalty goals.
The Aussies, captained by Ron Coote, were fortunate to make the Final, but once there made the most of their opportunity. Even during the match, it seemed as if Great Britain had the better of the contest, but the vital tries and points never came, and the Kangaroos held on to secure a surprising 12-7 win. The Australians had lost twice in the tournament, the British just the Final.
Australia 12 - 7 Great Britain
November 7th 1970
Headingley Stadium, Leeds
Referee: Fred Lindop (England)
Australia: Simms, Williamson, Cootes, Sait, Harris, Fulton, Smith, O'Neill, Turner, O'Reilly, McCarthy, Costello, Coote. Subs: Branighan, Walters
Tries: Williamson, Cootes. Goals: Simms 3
Great Britain: Dutton, Smith, Hynes, Myler, Atkinson, Shoebottom, Hepworth, Hartley, Fisher, Watson, Thompson, Laughton, Reilly. Subs: Hesketh, Haigh
Try: Aktinson. Goals: Dutton, Hynes
1970 World Cup Results
Australia beat New Zealand: 47 - 11 at Wigan. Attendance: 9,586
Great Britain beat Australia: 11 - 4 at Leeds. Attendance: 15,084
New Zealand beat France: 16 - 15 at the Boulevard, Hull. Attendance: 3,824
Great Britain beat France: 6 - 0 at Castleford. Attendance: 8,958
Great Britain beat New Zealand: 27 - 17 at Swinton. Attendance: 5,609
France beat Australia 17 - 15 at Bradford. Attendance: 6,215