You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Kangaroos v Samoa: Australia unchanged; Harris-Tavita to hooker

History will be made at Old Trafford on Sunday morning (AEDT) when defending champions Australia take on first-time finalists Samoa at the Theatre of Dreams.

The Kangaroos booked a spot in their 10th World Cup final with a hard-fought 16-14 win over New Zealand in the first semi before Samoa stunned hosts England 27-26 in a golden point thriller to advance to the decider.

Having lost 60-6 to England in the opening game of the tournament it was a remarkable turnaround by Matt Parish's team, who fear no-one as they stand on the verge of an incredible triumph.

Australia are chasing a third consecutive World Cup title after winning in 2013 and 2017 and they are battle hardened after being pushed to the limit by the Kiwis in a physical clash at Elland Road.

Samoa will enter the final as sentimental favourites and are sure to have the crowd on their side at Old Trafford but the Kangaroos boast a remarkable World Cup record having been crowned champions 11 times.

Latest Team News

Australia: A clean bill of health for the Kangaroos. Coach Mal Meninga looks to have settled on Nathan Cleary at halfback and Ben Hunt and Harry Grant as his hookers, so veteran playmaker Daly Cherry-Evans looks to be one of the unlucky players to miss out on the 17. Reagan Campbell-Gillard return from a cork in the semi-final and came through unscathed and will be right to play.

Samoa: Fa'amanu Brown will miss the final after suffering a concussion against England when he clashed heads with teammate Oregon Kaufusi. Chanel Harris-Tavita will start at hooker in his place. Prop Junior Paulo is free to play after receiving a caution for a lifting tackle on England's Tom Burgess.

Team Lists


  • Fullback for Australia is number 1 James Tedesco
    Fullback for Samoa is number 1 Joseph Suaali'i
  • Winger for Australia is number 4 Valentine Holmes
    Winger for Samoa is number 2 Taylan May
  • Centre for Australia is number 8 Latrell Mitchell
    Centre for Samoa is number 4 Stephen Crichton
  • Centre for Australia is number 10 Jack Wighton
    Centre for Samoa is number 25 Tim Lafai
  • Winger for Australia is number 9 Josh Addo-Carr
    Winger for Samoa is number 5 Brian To'o
  • Five-Eighth for Australia is number 7 Cameron Munster
    Five-Eighth for Samoa is number 6 Jarome Luai
  • Halfback for Australia is number 14 Nathan Cleary
    Halfback for Samoa is number 7 Anthony Milford


  • Prop for Australia is number 5 Jake Trbojevic
    Prop for Samoa is number 10 Junior Paulo
  • Hooker for Australia is number 3 Ben Hunt
    Hooker for Samoa is number 20 Chanel Harris-Tavita
  • Prop for Australia is number 6 Reagan Campbell-Gillard
    Prop for Samoa is number 15 Royce Hunt
  • 2nd Row for Australia is number 17 Angus Crichton
    2nd Row for Samoa is number 11 Ligi Sao
  • 2nd Row for Australia is number 21 Liam Martin
    2nd Row for Samoa is number 12 Jaydn Su'a
  • Lock for Australia is number 24 Isaah Yeo
    Lock for Samoa is number 23 Oregon Kaufusi


  • Interchange for Australia is number 11 Cameron Murray
    Interchange for Samoa is number 8 Josh Papali'i
  • Interchange for Australia is number 13 Patrick Carrigan
    Interchange for Samoa is number 16 Spencer Leniu
  • Interchange for Australia is number 18 Tino Fa'asuamaleaui
    Interchange for Samoa is number 17 Martin Taupau
  • Interchange for Australia is number 20 Harry Grant
    Interchange for Samoa is number 22 Kelma Tuilagi


  • Replacement for Australia is number 2 Daly Cherry-Evans
    Replacement for Samoa is number 26 Ken Sio

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ashley Klein

Last updated:

Key Match-ups

Cameron Munster v Jarome Luai

Two of the most gifted talents on show at the World Cup meet in a mouth-watering showdown of skills and wills at Old Trafford. Luai has been dynamic for Samoa, laying on a miraculous try for fellow Panther Stephen Crichton against England with some outrageous footwork and a brilliant tap-on. He leads the tournament in try assists with eight and his combination with Anthony Milford has been pivotal to Samoa's success. Munster has eight try assists to his name and the renowned big-game player is set to come into his own at Old Trafford. The Storm superstar is quick on his feet and even quicker between the ears and he'll make Samoa pay if their middles clock off and give him even the smallest opportunity to run.

One of the craziest offloads you'll see sends Crichton over

Reagan Campbell-Gillard v Junior Paulo

The battle for supremacy in the opening 15 minutes will be worth the price of admission as Paulo, Royce Hunt and Jaydn Su'A look to repel the challenge of RCG, Jake Trbojevic and Liam Martin. Having taken down Tonga and England in their past two matches Samoa's big men are primed for the challenge and will be pushing off the back fence from minute one. After missing the quarter-final with a cork, Eels enforcer Campbell-Gillard was back in the thick of things against New Zealand and got some miles in his legs ahead of his second 'grand final' in seven weeks.

Stat Attack

Josh Addo-Carr's freakish semi-final try took his tally for the tournament to 12, equalling the record set by Kangaroos team-mate Valentine Holmes during Australia's 2017 World Cup campaign. Holmes has taken his overall tally of World Cup tries to 14 and sits just two behind Billy Slater's all-time World Cup record of 16 tries.

Always keep your eyes on the Foxx!

Brian To'o has carried his metre-eating heroics from Penrith to the UK and is churning out 250m per game for the men in blue. Only Kiwi Joey Manu (1301) has tallied more metres than To'o (1248) while Samoa fullback Joseph Suaali'i sits third with 1108m and Kangaroos skipper James Tedesco fourth with 935.

Acknowledgement of Country

Penrith Panthers players and staff respect and honour the traditional custodians of the land and pay our respects to their elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.