New Zealand will look to break an eight-game losing streak against Australia this Saturday night at Suncorp Stadium as the 2014 Four Nations tournament gets underway.
Five players are set to make their Test debuts for the Kangaroos, including Wests Tigers’ Aaron Woods who will start the game at prop forward.
On the opposing side, just one player will make their debut for the Kiwis in North Queensland’s Jason Taumalolo. Fellow rookie Dallin Watene-Zelezniak was ruled out through injury this week, replaced by St George Illawarra’s Gerard Beale on the wing.
Wests Tigers skipper Robbie Farah has been named on the interchange bench and is set to rotate with Australian captain Cameron Smith at dummy-half.
Farah missed the previous mid-season clash with the Kiwis earlier this year after suffering a dislocated elbow in the Wests Tigers’ Round 6 victory over North Queensland.
Two Wests Tigers who played in that match were Martin Taupau and Adam Blair, who have retained their place in the New Zealand line-up for this game.
Blair moves into the front row of the Kiwis, while Taupau will look to provide impact from an interchange bench boasting Lewis Brown, Greg Eastwood and Tohu Harris.
It shapes to be an exciting kick-off to the Four Nations tournament, with a new-look Australian side coming up against a determined New Zealand team.