Lockyer in a class of his own - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lockyer in a class of his own

By Brent Read 29/11/2004 05:26:28 AM Comments (0)

He may not have the Golden Boot but there can be no dispute over who owns the title of world's best rugby league player after Darren Lockyer's astonishing performance in the Tri Nations final.

Lockyer, who came into the game with only 53 minutes under his belt over the past month thanks to a rib injury that requires three months rest, demolished Great Britain at Elland Road with a virtuoso performance.

The Kangaroos captain was named man of the match after playing a part in Australia's six first half tries, scoring one himself when he took a Nathan Hindmarsh pass and raced 50 metres to break British hearts.

He added six goals for good measure as Australia won 44-4 - a performance which had teammates and coach Wayne Bennett singing his praises.

"As I said the other day he'll only be an asset to us if he plays well," Bennett said.

"He was a valuable asset ... he was outstanding."

Lockyer, crowned the world's best player last year, was controversially overlooked for the prestigious award last week when Lions captain Andy Farrell was given the gong.

But the Brisbane, Queensland and Australian captain is now in a class of his own.

His combination with Anthony Minichiello for the Kangaroos' 13th minute try set the standard for the evening.

Lockyer handled three times in the lead-up before putting Minichiello through a gaping hole to make the score 14-0.

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