Excitement builds for RL World Cup 2021 draw

Australia triumphed on home soil in 2017
Australia triumphed on home soil in 2017

The 2021 Rugby League World Cup, which will be staged on our shores, is still more than 20 months away but all 16 countries have now qualified.


England, Australia, New Zealand, France, Wales, Jamaica, Fiji, Lebanon, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Italy, Ireland, Scotland, Greece, and the Cook Islands will be in the draw for the competition which runs from October 23 and November 27.

The draw for the men's, women's and wheelchair competitions will be made on January 16, 2020.

Cook Islands were the last to qualify and despite his sin-binning in the second half, St Helens second rower Dominque Peyroux played a part in their 38-6 victory over the USA and will be just one of a plethora of star-studded players from the Totally Wicked Stadium in the selectors' thoughts ahead of the tournament.

Peyroux could be joined in the Cook Island set-up by St Helens team-mate Zeb Taia but now 35 and not having been called up since 2013 at international level, he may miss the cut.

England will, however, be able to call on the services of a host of talented individuals, including Tommy Makinson, Jonny Lomax, Alex Walmsley, James Roby, Mark Percival and Luke Thompson, providing they are all fit and maybe the up and coming Jack Welsby, who has just signed a new deal, while Wales will have Regan Grace and Morgan Knowles at their beckon call.

France will have Theo Fages in the mix, Kevin Naiqama is expected to skipper Fiji, and there are one or two others who have already featured for different countries.

Aussie Lachlan Coote played half a game in a GB shirt during the recent tour Down Under, but is also a Scotland international; Louie McCarthy-Scarisbrook has donned both the England and Ireland shirt; Kyle Amor has represented the Irish and Joseph Paula has worn the Samoa shirt.

In 2021, more teams than ever will take part with four pools of four nations competing in 17 venues across England, including the Totally Wicked Stadium..

All quarter finalists from the preceding World Cup automatically qualified and the remaining eight nations were decided by a qualification process based on global regions determined by the International Rugby League.

The draw for the men's, women's and wheelchair competitions will be made on January 16, 2020.