|International Test match, Denver, USA|
|England (10) 36|
|Tries: Hall, Whitehead 2, Connor, Makinson, Bateman Goals: Widdop 6|
|New Zealand (12) 18|
|Tries: Marsters, Watene-Zelezniak 2 Goals: Isaako 3|
England came from behind to ease past New Zealand in a Test match that was contested in Denver, USA.
Esan Marsters and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak gave the Kiwis a 12-0 lead.
England were playing their first match since last December’s 6-0 World Cup final defeat by Australia and Ryan Hall’s brilliant try cut the deficit.
Elliott Whitehead scored twice and debutants Jake Connor and Tommy Makinson both went over before John Bateman completed a resounding victory.
England impress on American adventure
England were playing in the USA for the first time since 2000 as they aim to raise the sport’s profile in North America, which is hosting the 2025 Rugby League World Cup.
The 76,125-capacity Mile High Stadium had large banks of empty seats, but the fans who were there became excitable each time the two sides came close to the try line.
The match, played 5,000ft above sea level, provided a stern test and the difficult conditions were immediately evident as the ball sailed a number of metres out of play straight from kick-off.
New Zealand opened the lead through Marsters, one of seven debutants in the Kiwi side, following Kodi Nikorima’s clever break.
Isaac Luke then ripped through the defence before laying on full-back Watene-Zelezniak, who also added a consolation late on.
England responded impressively with 32 unanswered points, starting with Hall’s acrobatic effort from Connor’s pass, although it looked like the Leeds Rhinos winger had dropped the ball while finishing.
Whitehead burrowed over each side of half-time and Widdop added a 50m penalty, while Hull’s Connor and St Helen’s Makinson both capped their first England match by touching down in the second period.
New Zealand head to England for a three-match series at the end of the Super League season:
- Saturday, 27 October, 14:30 BST – KCOM Stadium, Hull.
- Saturday, 3 November, 17:30 GMT – Anfield, Liverpool.
- Sunday, 11 November, 15:15 GMT – Elland Road, Leeds.
All those games will be live on BBC TV, radio and online.