Ben Fisher feels that Scotland’s Rugby League World Cup 2013 will go down as a success despite what happens on Thursday as the Bravehearts look ahead to their final Group C/D game against the USA at Salford City Stadium (8.00pm).
Having drawn with Italy at the weekend, Scotland must beat the Tomahawks in Thursday night’s showdown to retain a realistic chance of going through to the quarter-finals, and the hooker feels proud to be part of RLWC2013.
“It has been very successful so far,” said Fisher. “The tournament has been well received and attended. I am not sure the organisers expected it to go down quite as well as it has. All in all, I will reflect on it being positive.
“The quality of the players involved is better than in the 2008 World Cup, the quality of the tournament is better too and, with there being four more teams, it is also a bigger tournament.
“The Tonga game was massive, and coming up against Italy and getting a share of the spoils, we will look back and say it is the most successful World Cup ever, and I am humbled to be a part of it.
“There were mixed emotions after the Italy game. We felt like we had done enough to win it but the simple things let us down.
“We conceded some soft tries and they didn’t have to work particularly hard for them, so it felt like a point lost but a point won.
“If we had won we would have been staring down the barrel of the quarter finals, so it was a bit frustrating, but it was a very good, tough game of Rugby League.”
Thursday’s game will be the first time Scotland have played outside of Workington, where the Bravehearts have had vocal support throughout their campaign, and Fisher acknowledged the part they have played.
“It was a great atmosphere on Sunday,” he said. “The Workington crowd really got behind us. We have been up there for a while and it was a little isolated, but the people from the town have supported the side.
“We did a lot there too, we promoted the game well to them. The boys were out and about with the community which built a good relationship with the locals.”
“We have done our review on the USA. They are a good team and I think they will win their pool. They have got a lot of good players, like Joseph Paulo for example who is steering them around the park, but we will be ready.”
Scotland head coach Steve McCormack has named his 19 man squad to play USA at Salford City Stadium on Thursday (20:00)
By Liam Williams