|Italy scoring against the USA|
The first team to complete three games and end their tournament was Italy. They bought an experienced side of mainly Australian born players of Italian heritage. RL is growing in the home country but the standard isn't yet sufficient to put a competitive side in a WC.
Report card: This was Italy's second visit to the elite competition, having also attended the previous edition in 2013. That year Italy's record was win, draw, loss of 1-1-1 with a 0 for and against. In 2017, it was 1-0-2 and a -6.
For 2017, its first up match with Ireland had most picking the Azzurri to win. A shock 12-36 loss was followed by a much improved 46-0 defeat of the USA. The final match was a 10-38 scoreline with Fiji. I'd have to say the 2013 WC was the more consistent effort.
Final ranking for the tournament: 9th to 11th (out of 14 teams).
Picture source: RLEF.
Other teams ranked at the 2017 WC. Click on the nation to go to that article.
12th - 14th: Scotland, Wales, USA.
9th - 11th: France, Italy, Samoa.
5th - 8th: Ireland, Lebanon, New Zealand, PNG.
1st - 4th: Australia, England, Fiji, Tonga.