As the NRL season came to a close, international Rugby League returned in the shape of the 2016 Four Nations tournament, hosted by England. A total of 12 New South Welshmen were selected for the 24-man Australian Kangaroos squad, including debutants Jake Trbojevic, Shannon Boyd, Tyson Frizell, James Maloney and Matt Moylan – all of whomperformed admirably throughout the tournament.
The Kangaroos’ campaign started with a one-off encounter with the New Zealand Kiwis in Perth, which the hosts won 26-6. What followed was three convincing Four Nations wins over Scotland, New Zealand and England respectively, placing the green-and-golds in the tournament final against their trans-Tasman rivals. The Australians’ strongest team put forward their most dominant display yet, defeating the Kiwis 34-8 at the hallowed turf of Anfield. They regained the no.1 international ranking and left fans with little doubt of which team was the best on the planet.
Key to the exceptional display were all NSW-eligible players who participated, including NSW VB Blues winger Blake Ferguson, who picked up the Harry Sunderland medal for Australia’s player of the series. It bodes well for the VB Blues’ chances in 2017.