2017 Rugby League World Cup Quarter-Finals Preview

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The 2017 Rugby League World Cup has already been a roaring success and there is plenty of anticipation ahead of the start of the knockout stages this weekend.

The tournament was turned on its head when Tonga beat New Zealand last Saturday afternoon and that means that Australia and New Zealand are now on the same side of the draw.

We have analysed all four games set to take place this weekend and our complete 2017 Rugby League World Cup Quarter-Finals tips can be found below.

Australia Vs Samoa

Friday 17 November, 8:30pm, Darwin Stadium

Australia are dominant favourites to secure their spot in the semi-finals when they take on Samoa in Darwin on Friday night.

The Kangaroos were not overly impressive against Lebanon in their final game of the pool stage, but it really would not surprise to see them go to another level now that we have reached the knockout stages of the tournament.

Samoa are yet to win a game at the 2017 Rugby League World Cup following their draw with Scotland and they are incredibly lucky to have made the quarter-finals.

New Zealand were able to beat Samoa by 30 points in their opening game of the 2017 Rugby League World Cup and using that as a form reference the line of 31.5 points for this clash is unlikely to be enough.

Back Australia To Beat The Line (-31.5 Points)

Tonga Vs Lebanon

Saturday 18 November, 3:00pm, Rugby League Park

Tonga have taken the 2017 Rugby League World Cup by storm and they stamped themselves as genuine contenders with their upset win over New Zealand.

The forward pack of Tonga is right up there with the very best at this tournament and there is every chance that they will run through this Lebanon side that does lack depth in the pack.

Lebanon were not disgraced in any of their games during the 2017 Rugby League World Cup to date, but they have probably played right up to their ability level and a fired-up Tonga do represent a different type of challenge.

Tonga can continue their charge at this World Cup and the line of 28.5 points will not be enough.

Back Tonga To Beat The Line (-28.5 Points)

New Zealand Vs Fiji

Saturday 18 November, 5:30pm, Westpac Stadium

New Zealand’s quest to win the Rugby League World Cup got much, much harder after they lost to Tonga last Sunday.

The Kiwis lacked composure at key times during the dramatic clash and the Tongans showed that this is a side that does have some serious issue in defence.

Fiji have recorded big wins in each of their games during the 2017 Rugby League World Cup, but this is easily the biggest challenge they have faced during the tournament to date.

The fact that Fiji have had such an easy path to this stage of the tournament does make them a tough side to analyse, but we have seen at recent tournaments that they have failed to matched it when they are forced to take on the best sides in the world.

New Zealand will be smarting from their loss to Tonga and they can take out that frustration on Fiji.

Back New Zealand To Beat The Line (-14.5 Points)

England Vs Papua New Guinea

Sunday 19 November, 4:00pm, AAMI Stadium

This is the most interesting game of this stage of the tournament.

England will start this clash as clear favourites, but it is fair to say that they haven’t been overly impressive during the tournament to date.

They were gallant against Australia and they go the job done against Lebanon and France without really putting either to the sword.

Papua New Guinea have played some outstanding rugby league during the tournament to date and they recorded big wins over Wales and the United States, while they toughed out a victory against a gallant Ireland.

This is easily the toughest test that they have faced during the tournament to date and the way that they have played during the tournament to date suggests that they are up for it.

Papua New Guinea may not be good enough to beat England, but they can at least give them a scare and cover the line in the process.

Back Papua New Guinea To Beat The Line (+14.5 Points)