19 Nov 2008

Unchanged Kiwi lineup for World Cup final

6:03 am on 19 November 2008

The Kiwis will take an unchanged line-up into the Rugby League World Cup grand final against Australia at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on Saturday night.

Coach Stephen Kearney has retained the same combination that eliminated England 32-22 in their semi-final at the same venue last Saturday.

That means 23-year-old second rower Bronson Harrison will again start alongside David Fa'alogo in the second row with Sika Manu on the interchange bench... in the side originally named last week, Harrison was listed on the bench but he was subsequently used as a starting second rower, celebrating by scoring his first test try early in the second half.

Set to start his 16th test is winger Manu Vatuvei, the only New Zealand player who won a spot in the team of the year named at the inaugural International Rugby League Awards in Brisbane on Monday night.

This will be New Zealand's third appearance in a World Cup final and also the third title decider against Australia. The previous two ended in losses - 12-25 in 1988 and 12-40 in the last World Cup staged in 2000.