The past month of Rugby League has been a pure joy to watch; from Lebanon's historic win over France to Tonga and Fiji's remarkable victories over New Zealand, the 2017 World Cup has probably been one of the best ever in terms of entertainment. The depth of talent on show has been nothing short of outstanding which has made it very difficult to pick just thirteen players in their respective positions that have stood out amongst the rest.

1. Kevin Naiqama - Fiji

The Wests Tigers' fullback is, undoubtedly, one of the best in the world in his position - a fact which he demonstrated throughout the tournament. As captain of the Bati, Naiqama led his team to the semi-finals where they eventually came unstuck against the holders Australia.

With flair and speed in abundance, Naiqama was a crucial figure in Fiji's unbeaten run that took the island nation into the last four, especially as the Bati triumphed against New Zealand for the first time in their history. His passion and pride in playing for his nation was a joy to behold; the tears he shed as the Fijian national anthem was being played prior to their clash with the USA sent shivers down the spine and will long be remembered as one of the most powerful moments of this World Cup.

2. Jermaine McGillvary- England

After impressing in yet another mediocre season for Huddersfield Giants, McGillvary boarded the plane to Australia with very few in the southern hemisphere knowing his name.

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All this was about to change however as the blockbusting winger has made this tournament one to remember. Although McGillvary has scored seven tries so far - the highest in the England side and third overall - it is other aspects of his game that has guaranteed his spot on this list. His defence has been akin to that of a brick wall whilst his ball-running now has to be one of the strongest in Rugby League; his metre-count stands at a ridiculous 1024 which is nearly 300 more than England's second-highest, James Graham. McGillvary has impressed so much that he was shortlisted for the Golden Boot as the world's best player and has been touted by some to become a potential NRL star.

3. Kallum Watkins - England

Watkins found the form for Leeds Rhinos in 2017, and, after a rather disappointing 2016 season, he played a key role in the Rhinos' Grand Final-winning season. He has since taken this form into the World Cup, forming a solid and devastating partnership with winger Jermaine McGillvary and has provided some brilliant touches and pieces of skill that only he can deliver.

Watkins' assist for McGillvary's second try in the quarter-final demolition of PNG was just evidence of a centre enjoying his Rugby League and one at the pinnacle of his career.

4. Konrad Hurrell - Tonga

The man-mountain Hurrell needs no introduction over in Australia; after five seasons with New Zealand Warriors he made the move to the Gold Coast and has been with the Titans since 2016. His incredible power combined with some silky skill proved decisive in Tonga's march to the semi-finals and, it was no surprise that the man outside him on the wing, David Fusitu'a, registered the most tries for Tonga with five. A very difficult man to bring down, Hurrell regularly got Tonga on the front foot by attracting multiple defenders, which then created the space that his teammates could exploit.

5. Valentine Holmes - Australia

Who else on the wing but this man? Leading the try-scoring list having scored 12 with still one match to go, Holmes has burst onto the World Cup scene like very few before him. He broke the record for the most tries in a World Cup match with five in the Kangaroos' thrashing of Samoa, then broke his own record the week after, crossing for six tries as the Aussies battered Fiji. In doing so, Holmes surpassed fellow Australian Wendell Sailor's record for tries at one World Cup which had stood at 10 - set in 2000.

6. Tuimoala Lolohea - Tonga

Following his move to Wests Tigers ahead of the 2017 season, Lolohea has undergone something of a revival in 2017. After previously being a bit-part player for New Zealand Warriors, he entrenched himself as the Tigers' first-choice stand-off midway through 2017. With renewed confidence, Lolohea was in inspiring form for his country, scoring three tries - the most memorable of which was his interception to take Tonga into the lead against the Kiwis - and generally being the lynchpin whom the men in red depended upon.

7. Cooper Cronk - Australia

Twice Dally M Player of the Year, Cronk has always been the cog around which teams are built upon. For Australia, he has been an ever-present in the side since the late 2000s and a player upon whom the Kangaroos have always relied; this World Cup has been no different. Cronk is a marshal; he directs the Australia team around the pitch with what appears little effort and, in the absence of Jonathan Thurston, Cronk has stepped up to the plate in even more impressive fashion, forming a seamless partnership with stand-off Michael Morgan.

8. Luke Page - PNG

PNG are renowned for their physicality and their carefree, head-down running style. A good example of this style has been the towering prop, Luke Page. Page, whom must be one of the most powerful runners in the game, had a little foray in the NRL with St George Illawarra Dragons in 2015 but has since been plying his trade for Queensland Cup side, Burleigh Bears. However, with his direct, aggressive running - indeed, he made the most metres out of any of his fellow PNG forwards - and his 'no-holds-barred' type of defence on show throughout his and PNG's time at the World Cup, Page has surely reasserted himself as a potential NRL forward.

9. Cameron Smith - Australia

One can look no further than the 2017 Golden Boot winner for the No.9 position. The Melbourne Storm spine of Billy Slater, Cooper Cronk and Smith has been pivotal at both club and national level; the trio work seamlessly, causing endless problems in opponents' defensive lines. And, at the heart of this triumvirate of skill and talent is Smith; he is the one that gets the attacks going and he has been the one that has enabled the Kangaroos to launch their devastating attacks with quick and efficient service out of dummy half. Smith's ability to spot an opening is second to none and his sniping around the ruck has proved vital in allowing Australia to simply overwhelm their opponents thus far.

10. James Graham - England

Mr England himself, James Graham is still one of the most formidable forwards in the game at the ripe old age of 32. With six years of NRL experience under his belt with the Canterbury Bulldogs, he is well accustomed to the Australian game and climate. Even so, his performances at the World Cup have been superb; he runs his blood to water and the effort he goes through for his country has been epitomised after every game: sitting down on his haunches, he looks absolutely cream-crackered. Graham has led from the front - making the most yards of any English forward - and leads the charge in defence. His commitment to the cause can be summed up by his 90-yard chase of Josh Dugan in the last minute of England's opening game loss to Australia.

11. Boyd Cordner - Australia

A loyal servant to the Sydney Roosters since 2011, Cordner has also been in and around the national side since 2013. The 2017 season saw Cordner hit the heights of his career at club level, whilst captaining New South Wales in the State of Origin series is an example of how much respect he commands within the game. And, in the past month, Cordner has demonstrated just why he is rated so highly; impressive as ever and never one to take a backwards step, Cordner has contributed greatly to Australia's dazzling form.

12. Viliame Kikau - Fiji

Although primarily played as a prop for club Penrith Panthers, Kikau made the second-row spot his own for the Bati. At 6 ft 5 and 120kg, he has the physical capabilities of few others in the game and, at just 22, he is nowhere near the finished product. This is a scary thought when considering just how much of an impact he had at this year's World Cup. His ability to throw off defenders like rag-dolls and punch holes through defensive lines is quite remarkable, and, at the tournament, he made the most metres for his country and crossed for three tries - all of which highlighted his brute strength. Kikau is, truly, one to look out for in the future.

13. Jason Taumalolo - Tonga

Taumalolo was already making the headlines before Tonga had even played a game at this year's tournament after controversially switching his allegiance from New Zealand. This, however, did not affect his performances on the field in any way whatsoever; as Tonga's captain, he rallied his fellow countrymen to achieve something special with a victory over the Kiwis and came so close to leading his men to what would have been an unbelievable comeback win against England. Taumalolo's performances showcased his frightening ability; a real leader, a monster of a player that can steamroll through and over defenders, and, above all, a passionate and proud sportsman, Taumalolo proved why he is an international superstar.