NZ Kiwis coach Stephen Kearney has added experience to his interchange for their crucial Four Nations encounter with England at Dunedin’s Forsyth Barr on Saturday.
Utility Thomas Leuluai and forward Greg Eastwood will come back into the playing line-up after sitting out last week’s 14-12 nailbiter over Toa Samoa. They will replace Lewis Brown, who fills the 18th man spot, and Suaia Matagi.
Apart from those tweaks, Kearney has remained loyal to the side that toppled world champions Australia in the tournament’s opening round. Since then, Manu Vatuvei has assumed a place on the wing and Issac Luke has returned from suspension to the starting hooker’s role.
New Zealand currently lead the competition with two wins, but a loss to England and an Australian victory over Samoa next weekend would see a three-way tie for the two spots in the Wellington final on November 15.
The finalists would then be determined by a points-difference countback.
The NZ Kiwis side to face England in Dunedin on Saturday are:
11-Simon Mannering (captain)