Cook Islands coach Rusty Matua has let rip at the Women's Rugby League World Cup officials after Australia and New Zealand were put in the same group.
The Jillaroos obliterated the Cook Islands 74-0 in the opening game in York as fullback and co-captain Sam Bremner scored four tries.
Centre Evania Pelite scored a hat-trick, five-eighth Tarryn Aiken and winger Julia Robinson grabbed try scoring braces and Caitlan Johnston, Taliah Fuimaono and Shenae Ciesiolka crossed once in front of 3,091 fans.
While Matua wasn't too concerned with his loss to Australia, the coach did have issues with England's favourable draw before the tournament.
Matua claimed that the host's had been placed in an easy group, which should see them progress in front of their own fans.
However, he said tournament organisers who placed No.1 and No.2 seeds Australia and New Zealand together made it very hard for other teams to progress.
"I think Australia and New Zealand should've been split, that's a no-brainer," Matua said.
"They've played every grand final, so I can't imagine how they ended up in the same pool.
"I don't see any system that allows the two top seeds to be in the same pool.
"It's pretty tough being in the pool of death ... England's in the spa pool along with Brazil and Canada (and Papua New Guinea), that's a little bit unfair."
Australia show quick gulf in class at World Cup
The opening game for Australia may have shown why they are strong favourites to progress out of the group, which is a worrying sign for other teams.
Australia's NRLW players displayed a gulf in class and fitness that many nations may not be able to keep up with.
The match was 80 minutes in length - rather than the 70 minutes used in NRLW games - and it was clear to see the Cook Islands, who hadn't trained together before arriving in England, as each half neared an end.
The fact St George Illawarra fullback Emma Tonegato and Sydney Roosters centre Jess Sergis didn't feature also indicates the strength in depth Australia possesses.
Bremner stole the show and was named player of the match following a return season where she won Dally M fullback of the year.
The fullback missed 2021 because of the birth of her second child.
And the star grabbed a brace either side of halftime and topping the running count with 185 metres.
"All I do is just follow the girls around, they do the hard work and I try and finish it off," Bremner, who last played for Australia in 2016, said.
"In terms of the competition (for a jersey) it's a credit to how good women's rugby league is in Australia."
Australia play France in their second group game on Monday.
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