As the World Cup enters the semi finals, three aspects of the competition stand out.
Firstly, and unsurprisingly, the Australian team has displayed exceptional skill - and some individual players are entitled to be regarded as right up there with the best in the game at least in the modern era.
Secondly, England has been profoundly disappointing. That perhaps, in part, confirms what we already know - the influence of former NRL players in the UK Super league competition has never been greater. And it is only get even greater in 2009!