STEVE McNamara has opted to rest Saints’ James Roby for Saturday’s Group A match with Fiji
The hooker will miss the game alongside South Sydney Rabbitohs forward Tom Burgess and Melbourne Storm half-back Gareth Widdop.
England welcome back Souths forward Sam Burgess after he sat out the Ireland match with a one-match suspension, and Wigan Warriors forward Lee Mossop also returns after missing England’s 42-0 victory over the Wolfhounds.
“We have trained well and we are ready to put in a performance,” McNamara said. “I get the feeling the group is on the verge of some really big performances and this will be one of them.
“We are coming up against opposition we respect. We have so far seen a Fiji team that is very exciting to watch with some brilliant outside backs. They have a set of forwards that are as physical as any team in the tournament. I can see why people see them as a threat on Saturday.
Across the make-up of their team, the vast majority of their players are regular starters in the NRL and they are used to this level of intensity.
“The aim for us is gradual progression. We are looking to improve each week as the tournament moves towards the knockout stages. It is important to win against teams in and around you, but at some point you have to make sure all elements that have been positive in every game come together aiming for that complete performance.
“We know that if we are going to win the World Cup that has to happen.”
He continued: “Even though we put in a strong performance against Ireland and prevented them from scoring, I actually feel we can improve on our defence.
“In some respects we defended with more vigour the week before against Australia. The aim is to continually improve and we have to test ourselves in that area on Saturday.
“We defended a little bit passively against Ireland. On Saturday we need to show some aggression against Fiji. We did just enough to defend what Ireland threw at us and we were slick in our attacking structures especially in that first half.”
Carl Ablett, Tom Briscoe, George Burgess, Sam Burgess, Rob Burrow, Rangi Chase, Leroy Cudjoe, Liam Farrell, Brett Ferres, James Graham, Ryan Hall, Chris Hill, Michael McIlorum, Lee Mossop, Sean O’Loughlin, Kevin Sinfield, Sam Tomkins, Kallum Watkins, Ben Westwood.
Peni Botiki, Jayson Bukuya, Petero Civoniceva, Kane Evans, Aaron Groom, Apisai Koroisau, Daryl Millard, Ryan Millard, Kevin Naiqama, Waisale Ligani Naiqama, Vitale Junior Roqica, Ashton Sims, Korbin Sims, Tariq Sims, James Storer, Akuila Uate, Eloni Vunakece, Sisa Ledua Waqa, Semi Radradra Turgasoli Waqavatu.