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Rugby League World Cup Final 2008
25 October-22 November 2008
Fixtures | Tables



Tony Smith
Smith has one year left on his contract

Tony Smith will remain England coach despite Saturday's World Cup semi-final loss to New Zealand, according to Rugby Football League chief Richard Lewis.

Lewis hailed Smith as an "outstanding" coach after watching England's disappointing 32-22 defeat in Brisbane.

"We've got a lot of confidence in Tony and a lot of respect for Tony. Everybody in the game has," said Lewis.

Former Leeds coach Smith has a year left on his existing contract and said he had no thoughts of quitting.

"Coaches like challenges, they have to be tough, make decisions and learn from each game," said the Australian-born boss, who is now a British citizen. "They don't go running away very often.

"We'll go and assess [the performance] like we do all the other games, look at where we can improve and what we need to produce to improve for the future."

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Highlights - New Zealand 32-22 England

Lewis conceded England had not "punched their weight" in Australia and admitted searching questions would have to be asked.

"The bottom line was I don't think we were good enough," he said. "We had our opportunities, didn't take them, didn't play as well as we can, and we have to learn from that.

"Why didn't we get the best out of the players we had here, and what do we do to improve the next crop, the next generation of players?

"We have to learn from the World Cup. It's the pinnacle of the sport. It's been a really good event, but the team hasn't played as well as we wanted them to.

"But that's what World Cups are about. You are tested on the biggest possible stage and we came up short."

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Lewis added: "Tony was disappointed with some of the things that happened over the last few days, and he'll reflect on that. We'll all reflect on that and learn our lessons.

"For now it's about reflecting on an overall performance in the World Cup competition that wasn't good enough."

Smith suggested he did not have the playing staff to mount a serious World Cup title bid but added the foundations were already in place for that to change.

"We need more depth in our ranks, more people pushing each other which produces more competition for spots," he said.

"We're on the right road in many ways in Super League. Our competition is evening up and that forces players to play at a higher level. The days of soft games are gone."

see also
New Zealand 32-22 England
15 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
Coach Smith rues basic mistakes
15 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
World Cup pictures
15 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
England v NZ as it happened
15 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
Jon Wilkin column
13 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
NZ switch Leuluai to hooker role
13 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
England omit Gardner and McGuire
12 Nov 08 |  Rugby League
Smith loses Aussie referee battle
12 Nov 08 |  Rugby League


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FROM OTHER SPORT SITES
Birmingham Evening Mail England knocked out by Kiwis - 10 hrs ago
Teletext New Zealand 32 England 22 - 10 hrs ago
Rugby Super League England out of World Cup - 10 hrs ago
Rugby Super League Smith keeping his options open - 10 hrs ago
Sydney Morning HeraldEngland stand up to haka, fall to Kiwis - 10 hrs ago
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