Robes Ready For Kiwis

JAMES Roby is confident that England will be the complete package when they face holders New Zealand in Saturday’s must-see Rugby League World Cup 2013 semi-final at Wembley Stadium (1pm).

England have shown tantalising glimpses of their best form in reaching the last four of the 14-nation tournament but Roby, one of the most experienced players in coach Steve McNamara’s squad, has no doubts the hosts have what it takes to meet the challenge posed by the Kiwis.

“We haven’t been too far off in our last four games but we haven’t strung together a full 80-minute performance and that is definitely what we need to do on Saturday,” said the hooker. “We know that we are capable of better than what we have shown, so it is quite frustrating that we are not doing it on the day.

“It will be as tough a test as we have had so far and we know we need to be at the top of our game: I am certain we will be ready.

“Everyone has worked really hard to get to where we are now and there’s a lot of hunger within the camp.

“The Kiwis are possibly the form team of the tournament but I think we are at least equal to them. On our day we can turn anyone over.

“We need to prepare as best we can this week and if we give a true account of ourselves over the full match then we have got every chance.”

Over 65,000 tickets have been sold for the ‘Big Hit’ double header at Wembley Stadium, which takes place a week before the final in front of a capacity Old Trafford crowd, and Roby has been deeply impressed by the success of RLWC2013.

“The tournament has been fantastic,” said Roby. “The games have been very competitive and very well attended. In areas where you wouldn’t expect to get as many people watching you have had full stadiums and they have been for nations outside of the home countries so it is great that the fans have been backing some of the other teams.

“It has taken Rugby League to new parts of the country and hopefully that can bear fruit in a few years’ time with more young kids playing the sport. In terms of increasing the profile amongst other sports I think it has been very successful.”

England:

Carl Ablett (Leeds Rhinos, Hunslet Parkside), George Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor), Sam Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor), Rob Burrow (Leeds Rhinos, Featherstone Lions), Josh Charnley (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield Giants, Newsome Panthers), Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), Brett Ferres (Huddersfield Giants, Smawthorne Panthers), James Graham (Canterbury Bulldog, Blackbrook), Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos, Oulton Raiders), Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves, New Spring Lions), Lee Mossop (Wigan Warriors, Hensingham), Sean O’Loughlin (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), James Roby (St Helens, Blackbrook), Kevin Sinfield (captain) (Leeds Rhinos, Waterhead), Sam Tomkins (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos, Latchford Albion), Ben Westwood (Warrington Wolves, Normanton Knights), Gareth Widdop (Melbourne Storm, Kings Cross).

New Zealand:

Jesse Bromwich, Kieran Foran, Alex Glenn, Bryson Goodwin, Shaun Johnson, Sam Kasiano, Kevin Locke, Issac Luke, Simon Mannering, Ben Matulino, Sam Moa, Jason Nightingale, Frank-Paul Nuuausala, Frank Pritchard, Elijah Taylor, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Dean Whare, Sonny Bill Williams.

Demand for tickets for the ‘Big Hit’ RLWC2013 semi-final double-header at Wembley Stadium on Saturday November 23 – England v Australia (1.00pm) and New Zealand v Fiji (3.30pm) – is huge and fans are advised to move quickly to secure their seat. Tickets cost from just £20 (£10 concessions) and can be purchased by visiting www.rlwc2013.com

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