Since then, they have gone on to enjoy lots of success and have featured some of the biggest stars in the sport.
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England do not have a national Rugby League stadium although a number of stadiums are associated with them due to the number of matches they have hosted and/or the importance of those matches.
Amongst the most famous are the iconic Wembley Stadium (which has hosted many major matches and is the home of the Challenge Cup final), the ‘Theatre of Dreams’ Old Trafford (home of matches including the Rugby League World Cup final and the home of the Super League Grand Final), the DW Stadium in Wigan, Elland Road Stadium in Leeds and the MKM Stadium in Hull.
England are part of the European Federation where they have remained the number 1 ranked nation in that Federation since its existence.
Although England is the home of the sport of Rugby League, with its northern heartlands been the location of the Northern Union breakaway in the town of Huddersfield during 1895, it has both a long and short history as a country due to much of the history of the sport seeing a Great Britian team represent England and the other home nations.
Over the years, England has been the main representative side in the country for some periods and it has been the secondary representative side.
England are always easy to recognise whenever they take to the field thanks to their mainly white playing strip which often has red touches and a St George Cross worked into the design.
An English Rugby Union representative side had been playing matches since 1871 but it took 9 years from the split for a Northern Union for an international in the new code to take place.
The match took place at Central Park in Wigan and it was the Other Nationalities who came away with the win by 9 points to 3.
England first win came in Bradford a couple of years later in a match between the same 2 sides but on that occasion it was England who ran out 26-11.
By 1908, the focus for England turned to touring sides from the southern hemisphere, with New Zealand arriving in January 1908 and Australia arriving alter in the same year and for those matches, they would be known as Great Britian.
That was an experimental competition held all over the globe over several months and whilst England would win their first match held in Leeds against France, they would lose their next match to Wales in Sydney.
Over the year of competition, it was Australia who pipped England to the title after picking up 13 points to England’s 12, but even then it was decide that a final would be played as Australia had failed to defeat England during the competition.
The Kangaroos would thrash England 25-0 at Elland Road to be the worthy winners.
It then took until the 1995 RLWC for the next major event to feature England as the decision was (correctly) made to break up the home nations.
In 2011, England would face an ‘Other Nationalities’ team once again which was known as the Exiles.
England would make it through to the semi-finals of the 2013 when in front of a huge crowd at Wembley Stadium, they would come up short against New Zealand in one of the greatest international matches ever that saw the Kiwis come form behind in the last minute.
England would go one better at the 2017 event held in Australia and New Zealand after they defeated Tonga at the semi-final stage in a match that will live long in the memory for those who witnessed it but in what was the lowest scoring RLWC final in history, England would come up short against the Aussies by 6 points to 0.
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