Kiwi coach David Kidwell has retained the same 17 players used against the Kangaroos in Perth for the New Zealanders' opening Four Nations clash against England at John Smith’s Stadium in Huddersfield on Saturday (2.30pm kick-off local time; 2.30am Sunday NZT).

The tournament begins with Australia taking on Scotland's Bravehearts in Hull on Friday night (8.00am Saturday NZT).

The only change Kidwell has made to his squad is in the extra two players named on the interchange.

For the Test against Australia on October 15, Canberra's Joseph Tapine was named as 18th man and Cronulla's Gerard Beale as 19th man. This time Beale is listed as 18th man with Canterbury Bankstown's experienced internationalo Greg Eastwood selected as 19th man.

Vodafone Warriors Solomone Kata, Shaun Johnson and Thomas Leuluai are again in the starting side.

Kidwell and his coaching staff have been putting the players through their paces since arriving in England a week ago.

“I’m really happy with how the boys have trained. We understand the challenge that’s ahead of us and we need to be at our best,” he said.

“In Perth, a lot of our guys hadn’t played for a long period of time. The result wasn’t what we wanted, but all the players were better off for the run and we will look to build from that.

“It’s no secret this game is going to be won up front. Both teams have strong forward packs and we need our middle men to lead the way.”

The Kiwis and England tangled in a classic semi-final contest in the last Four Nations two years ago, the New Zealanders holding out the fast-finishing visitors 16-14 in Dunedin to reach the final.

The two nations also battled out a memorable semi-final at Wembley at the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, Shaun Johnson's at-the-death try and conversion giving the Kiwis a dramatic 20-18 win.

England, though, has an impressive home record against New Zealand, winning last year's three-Test series and also prevailing in Four Nations encounters in 2009 and 2011.

KIWIS v ENGLAND

John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield

Saturday, October 29, 2.30pm (Sunday, October 30, 2.30am NZT)

 

KIWIS

1 JORDAN KAHU

2 JASON NIGHTINGALE

3 SOLOMONE KATA

4 SHAUN KENNY-DOWALL

5 JORDAN RAPANA

6 THOMAS LEULUAI

7 SHAUN JOHNSON

8 JESSE BROMWICH (C)

9 ISSAC LUKE

10 JARED WAEREA-HARGREAVES

11 KEVIN PROCTOR

12 TOHU HARRIS

13 JASON TAUMALOLO

Interchange:

14 LEWIS BROWN

15 MARTIN TAUPAU

16 MANU MA'U

17 ADAM BLAIR

18 GERARD BEALE

19 GREG EASTWOOD

COACH | DAVID KIDWELL