In horrendous weather conditions in England's North West last night, the Cumbrian regional side recorded a 28-16 victory over a below-strength Tonga side at Derwent Park.
Whitehaven's Carl Rudd put in a man of the match performance, kicking six goals from six attempts. Team-mate Carl Sice, Barrow's Liam Finch and Huddersfield's Matt Gardner picked up tries for Cumbria.
England national coach Paul Cullen returned to his old Whitehaven stomping grounds to watch the game. Cullen and assistant coach Stuart Wilkinson were among the 1,600 crowd at Workington and singled out Feleti Mateo, Fui Fui Moimoi and Richard Fa'aoso as the biggest threats to his side in their match this coming Sunday.
"Five of the players who played against Samoa on Sunday played against Cumbria and three of them were among their better players," he said. "They hit very hard."
"The game was played in a monsoon and the Tongans, who weren't used to those conditions, didn't give up. They rested a lot of players and they will refresh their side to play against us."
Source: various reports