1975 England Rugby League World Cup team was one of the best England RL teams. They were unlucky to miss out on winning the Rugby League World Cup. Ellis Rugby launched a Polo shirt inspired by the great England Rugby League team of 1975. This team was led by Roger Millward. The launch video features the story behind this limited edition Polo Shirt.

Read More Rugby League World Cup England 1975

There was a change to the format of the Rugby League World Cup in 1975. It was decided to adopt a home-and-away league style competition spread over a period between March & November. Other major changes were England and Wales competing as two separate nations. Rather than a single team Great Britain. So with France, New Zealand and Australia the Rugby League World Championship as it was christened had five entrants.

Also, as history would show. The inclusion of Wales was to have a vital bearing on the destiny of the World Championship. A Welsh victory over England on Wales’s so-called home game played over in Brisbane, cost the English success.

England started their tournament against France at Headingley. It was a comfortable 20 points to 2 victory. Keith Fielding crossed for two tries with Roger Millward and Mick Morgan scoring the others. Hooker John Grey added four goals. Victor Serrano was the lone French scorer with a penalty goal.

Read More Rugby League World Cup England 1975

Although no one realised it at the time. The next outing staged over in Brisbane at Lang Park would determine the outcome of the world title. England v Wales was a brutal encounter and it was the Welsh. They won it both on the scoreboard and in the brawls that littered this game.
Wales Coach Les Pearce tactics looked to provoke the English pack. And the intimidating Welsh forwards with Jim Mills, Tony Fisher, Bobby Wanbon and John Mantle ran out winners in the physical battle. They also managed to keep the talented half-back duo of Steve Nash and the great Roger Millward quiet for most of the game.
Tommy Martyn crossed for a try and George Fairbairn kicked two goals. It was Wales who won by 12 points to seven. On the rare occasion Wales used their talented backline it was fitting the Great Britain hero of the 1970 Rugby League World Cup. Clive Sullivan scored the try that separated the teams.

New Zealand in Auckland

Eleven days later England had arrived in New Zealand to play the Kiwis at Carlaw Park in Auckland. The talented Kiwi Centre Dennis Williams continued to be a thorn in the side of the English team. He went over for two tries and Phil Orchard crossed for their third. With Dane Sorenson adding four goals in a game which the Kiwis controlled for much of the game.

However England’s fighting spirit came through with John Atkinson crossing for a fabulous try. Following great build-up work by his Leeds club colleague Les Dyl. George Fairbairn who was the hero of the day. Scoried two tries and four goals to get England Rugby League a valuable draw 17-17.

Draw with Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground

It was then back to Australia the following week to take on the Kangaroos. In their own backyard at Sydney Cricket Ground in front of 34,000 spectators. The teams drew 10-all and the performance breathed new life in to the competition. However, the English were lucky not to lose scrum-half Steve Nash twelve minutes in to the action. After he hit the giant Aussie, Mark Harris with a high tackle. It was this collision that smashed the nose of the powerful Centre. Kiwi referee Jack Percival opted to caution Nash, rather than send him off. – A decision that didn’t go down that well with the partisan crowd.

Millward snapped up a loose pass

Harris tried to play-on, but eventually left the field. Australian greats Ron Coote, Tommy Raudonikis and Artie Beetson began to take control. However Roger Millward snapped up a loose pass by Beetson and the found England flyer Ged Dunn in support to score. Ron Coote replied for the Kangaroos. Then the Australians crossed for a controversial try. The British Media were convinced that winger Chris Anderson had scored off a forward pass.

After the game referee Percival was shown the footage and agreed he should have ruled it forward. Then soon after England captain and talisman Roger Millward was forced off with injury. However, the best try of the afternoon came with just four minutes left on the clock. When Nash bamboozled the Australians to send Ken Gill, Millward’s replacement over to score. George Fairburn kicked two out of six attempts at goal. The game finished 10-10.

Back to Europe for the Rugby League World Cup

The next part of the Championship was stage in Europe. England gained revenge over Wales in the return clash at Warrington. Winning 22 points to 16. The English try scorers included Keith Fielding, John Holmes and Eric Hughes. Also, six goals from George Fairbairn and a drop goal from hooker Keith Bridges.

Millward’s team demolished France at the Stade Chabal-Delmas in Bordeaux by 48 points to 2. England scored 12 tries in total. Keith Fielding grabbing four and a brace each for Ged Dunn and John Holmes. Next up were the Kiwis at Odsal in Bradford. 27 points to 12 it finished in England’s favour. Most notably, Stand-off Ken Gill crossed for a hat-trick of tries.

England defeat Australia

Despite valiant performances by England. Their defeat against Wales meant they could not knock Australia off the top of the Championship ladder. But, in front of their own fans England played their best game of the tournament. Powerful Kangaroos winger Ian Schubert crossed for a hat-trick of tries. But his great individual effort was not enough to deny England victory. Roger Millward was once again the brains behind England’s success.

ARL supremo Kevin Humphreys admitted after the match. ‘Millward is a great match-winning halfback, the sort we don’t seem to produce’. The result finished England 16 Australia 13. But Australia were crowned champions despite the defeat.

Rugby League Cares and Manufacturing

With every sale, Rugby League Cares receives donations as a charity. Donations helps players transition out of the sport. Also, it supports players’ past and present who are enduring poor health or hardship.

Manufactured from 100% chunky pique cotton. In addition, the England Rugby League Shirt Polo 1975 features detailed embroidery. Also, appliqué badge as well as inner contrast placket, arm rib, and collar stand. This Polo Shirt is available in sizes S to 5XL.

Also, as well as the England Rugby League Shirt Polo 1975 we also offer a Great Britain Rugby League Shirt 1958. In addition the 1972 Rugby League T-Shirt World Cup Vintage Navy or White.