Rugby League: England ready for Kiwis’ fast start – Hall

Ryan Hall England Rugby League

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Winger Ryan Hall is confident England have what it takes to end New Zealand’s defence of the Rugby League World Cup on Saturday.

The 25-year-old Leeds Rhinos star admits England must play to their strengths against the Kiwis and avoid changing their playing style to suit the opposition in the semi-final at Wembley.

“We know what we can do. You cannot go and introduce new things and change the set-up just to suit their capabilities,” said Hall – the top try scorer in the tournament with eight scores.

“Having watched them throughout the tournament, it is clear that they start very quickly, looking to put early tries on the board. You only have to see that they are the highest scoring team in the competition to know just how good they are.

“We are feeling very positive that we have managed to get to this stage. There have been some very tough games but we put in a good amount of effort during the group stages, so hopefully we can go one step further again.”

New Zealand will be without winger Manu Vatuvei after the 27-year-old failed to recover from a groin injury picked up against Scotland last Friday. He is replaced in the squad by St George Illawarra winger Jason Nightingale.

But England will have to stop former All Black and Rugby Union World Cup winner Sonny Bill Williams – the star man for the Kiwis.

England forward Sam Burgess admitted: “Sonny’s a great player.

“He’s great for the game, great for the World Cup, and it will be tough to control him but we’ll look forward to that challenge.”

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