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Australia beat England in World Cup opener

England gave an encouraging display in the defeat to favourites Australia. Credit: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

Australia fought back to beat England 28-20 in the opening match of the Rugby League World Cup at the Millennium Stadium.

Underdogs England led 10-0 through tries from Leroy Cudjoe and Ryan Hall, but the visitors dominated the second half of the group match.

First Minister hopes for Wales victory this afternoon

First Minister Carwyn Jones has taken to twitter saying he's hoping to see Wales take victory against Italy as they embark on their Rugby League World Cup 2013 campaign.

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Looking forward to the big kick off at the Millennium Stadium later and here's hoping Wales start us off with a win! #RLWC2013

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Competition could help 'raise the profile' of rugby

Wales Coach Iestyn Harris says he hopes hosting the Rugby League World Cup will help raise the profile of the sport in the country.

Wales will take on Italy today as the competition gets underway in Cardiff.

While a win will go a long way to helping their campaign, organisers are hoping it has a greater effect off the field.

Rugby League World Cup opening ceremony

Wales take on Italy and Australia will play England in the Millennium Stadium.

The Rugby League World Cup gets underway in the Millennium Stadium today with the opening ceremony and then two games.

The opening games will see Wales take on Italy and Australia play England.

Wales Coach Iestyn Harris says he hopes hosting the competition will help raise the profile of the sport in the country.

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Cardiff Mind Sports Festival "first of its kind in the UK"

The Millennium Stadium's hosting the Cardiff Mind Sports Festival this weekend, with some of the UK's biggest board game experts playing at the venue.

The festival's also open for the public to take part and sees a variety of tournaments including Chess, Scrabble and our favourite card games.

"There's a huge audience that want to come and play," said Peter Ramsay, Marketing Director of Mind Sports International.

"In terms of the prize fund it's everything from small bragging rights to trophies to 2,000 to 10,000 pounds in euros.

"This is the first of its kind to come to the UK, it's the first ever to come here in Wales and its the largest one of its kind so far to dat."

Decorated soldier is new Millennium Stadium manager

Mark Williams says his military experience will serve him well in his new role. Credit: WRU

A decorated senior army officer has been appointed as the new manager of Cardiff's Millennium Stadium.

Mark Williams, from Glynneath, is a Lieutenant Colonel in the Royal Welsh, and served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq.

He was decorated for his actions in combat in Iraq, where he led Welsh soldiers on many missions into Basra in 2007.

Now 42, he joins the Welsh Rugby Union later this month on his retirement from the army.

In his new role, he will have responsibility for the operation of the Millennium Stadium, owned and operated by the WRU.

He replaces Gerry Toms, who stepped down in March from what he described as the best job in Wales.

Mark Williams said: "I am deeply honoured to be joining the WRU in such an important role and I relish the challenges and opportunities this represents for me. As a proud Welshman and rugby supporter I understand the important place the stadium holds in the whole psyche and culture of Wales."

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