World Cup: Familiar surroundings can help inspire England to desired results

England's Tom Burgess in action Picture: Gregg Porteous/NRL Photos/PAEngland's Tom Burgess in action Picture: Gregg Porteous/NRL Photos/PA
England's Tom Burgess in action Picture: Gregg Porteous/NRL Photos/PA
Sydney is now home for Tom Burgess but England are hoping the familiarity of Perth will help them grow into their World Cup campaign.

After playing group games in Melbourne and Sydney, England have flown back to Western Australia, where they spent 10 days on a pre-tournament warm-weather camp.

That included a warm-up match against a Combined Affiliated States team at nib Stadium, which will be the venue for their final group game, against France on Sunday.

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Perth is starting to feel a bit like home now,” said Burgess said. “We had a good 10 days here before the tournament.

“The boys will be out on Scarborough beach again doing their recovery. It’s a bit different to the Scarborough beach in England.

“There’s a good English contingent here, so we’re really looking forward to the game and hopefully we can get a really good crowd.”

Burgess and fellow substitute Alex Walmsley, the St Helens prop who made his debut, were singled out for praise by head coach Wayne Bennett following England’s unconvincing 29-10 win over Lebanon.

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“That’s been a focus for us coming off the bench, just adding something to the team, making sure we’re adding and not taking away,” said the South Sydney front rower.

“I think big Al did well when he went on. He missed out in the first week which was a tough one to take but he did well.”

Burgess provided the highlight of the match at the Allianz Stadium, charging 45 metres for a try which brought huge cheers from his brothers Sam and George watching on from the sidelines.

“It’s always good to get over,” he said. “It was a bit of a longer-range try than I’m used to. I just put my head down and went.

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“It worked out, although a few boys were shouting through the middle, saying I should have passed.

“I was happy with my performance. It’s always good to keep working on little things in my game, I’ve been working a lot on my defence.”

Burgess admits England need to improve on their performance against the Cedars and insists they will not be taking the French lightly.

“Hopefully we can keep building on our performances,” he said. “We got the win at the weekend. Lebanon put up a great fight so we’re not going to discredit them at all.

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“They controlled the ball well and defended well. I think we’ll be a bit disappointed with our second-half performance, towards the end a few execution passes were a bit off, but the boys will be working on that this week.

“France have had a crack in both games and they’ll be doing the same against us. We’re approaching every game the same. We’ll be putting a lot of work in this week.”

England’s players have been given two days off before getting down to training for Sunday’s game.

Burgess says older brother Sam is unlikely to play in that match but has a good chance of returning from his knee injury in time for the quarter-final a week later.