Rugby League: 'Wake-up call' for England after Four Nations flop

FORMER Great Britain coach Brian Noble has described England's disappointing Four Nations campaign as a "wake-up call" for Super League.

Under Steve McNamara, Noble's former assistant and successor at Bradford, England were beaten comprehensively by New Zealand and Australia, who will contest next Sunday's final in Brisbane, before labouring to a 36-10 win over minnows Papua New Guinea in their last group match at Auckland's Eden Park on Saturday.

Noble believes England have fallen further behind the big two since he was last in charge of the national side in 2006 and says a drop in standards in Super League is one of the reasons.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I think it's a bit of a wake-up call for us," said Noble, who has been on the tour as a BBC summariser and will stay on in Australia for a working holiday after leaving his job with Crusaders.

"The coaches I think tried to maximise their resources but I think we've been found off the pace at the highest level. It's always disappointing when you're not in the final of a competition but we don't seem to have improved over the last four or five years.

"Everybody's had a go so you have to think it's got to be resource rather than the bloke in charge. I've had a go, it was David Waite before me and then Tony Smith and now Steve (McNamara) so there's some high-quality coaches there who know what they're doing.