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Page last updated at 20:41 GMT, Saturday, 17 October 2009 21:41 UK

Smith happy with England workout

England coach Tony Smith
Smith said the team would benefit from the run-out against Wales

England coach Tony Smith insisted there were plenty of positives that could be taken out of his team's laboured 48-12 win over Wales in Bridgend.

Debutant Sam Tomkins was the stand-out player as England made hard work of their Four Nations warm-up match.

"We'll get a lot out of that. I am pleased with the hit-out," said Smith.

"It is no good when the scoreline goes one way and there is a total blowout for one team - you don't learn as much about your defensive structure."

Many of England's players had not had a run-out since the end of the regular season, and it showed as they got much-needed match practice ahead of the opening Four Nations game against France next Friday.

"Some of our skills were a little off at times, as was some of our decision-making," added Smith.

"But that's understandable when there are guys there who hadn't played for a while.

"I am pleased that we've been able to get some of the rustiness out and that we finished the game strongly. We scored some nice tries.

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"We also got through it pretty well in terms of injuries, and I would be doubtful that we've got any concerns ahead of the games facing us."

Despite Tomkins' hat-trick of tries and man of the match award, Smith was keen to share the praise around.

"His broken field play was very good, but I thought both half-backs (Tomkins and Richie Myler) did well," stated Smith.

"There were some good performances throughout, and I thought Sam Burgess was especially very good."

Coach Iestyn Harris was in charge of Wales for the first time, and said he too saw plenty of positives to take to their next game, a European Cup match against Serbia next weekend.

"I am really encouraged by it," said Harris.

"We got a little bit tired towards the end, but I thought they went really well for a young group of players.

"When we got together on Monday they didn't have a lot of belief, but we gave them a game plan to enable them to have a real dip at England, and I thought the players really stood up tall.

"We gave England a challenge, and I'm sure we have learned more from tonight than when we played them 12 months ago."



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see also
Wales 12-48 England
17 Oct 09 |  Rugby League
Aussies out of French contention
17 Oct 09 |  Rugby League
Wales look to restore lost pride
16 Oct 09 |  Rugby League
Bridge given shock England call
13 Oct 09 |  Rugby League
Harris takes over as Wales coach
22 Sep 09 |  Rugby League
Senior ponders England comeback
06 Oct 09 |  Rugby League
BBC to show England v Australia
06 Aug 09 |  Rugby League
Tomkins targets Cup glory
04 Aug 09 |  Wigan


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