Australia head coach Mal Meninga praised a number of his squad’s reserve players, but confirmed they may not feature in the rest of the Four Nations tournament.
With one eye on the Kangaroos’ upcoming matches with New Zealand and England, Meninga opted to rest Johnathan Thurston and Greg Inglis, with Matt Moylan and James Maloney playing in their absence.
Maloney, who won the NRL Premiership with Cronulla, scored 18 points on his debut while full-back Matt Moylan was named man-of-the-match after an exceptional display, also on debut.
However, Meninga admitted that it was possible neither will play again.
“That’s the beauty of this team,” he said. “We’re 24 deep and they’re all great players, they all deserve to be here.
“Our job is to get the best team out of all that but it’s nice to have that competition. It’s nice to have internal pressure amongst the players, they responded really well to it.
“Matt was exceptionally good, right from the start his touches were excellent. He was the players’ player of the match so that’s a big accolade for him. He’s an exceptional player, certainly one for the future.”
A full report will be in Monday’s League Express.