Kiwis Update - October 31st 2013
KIWIS: UPDATE FOR MEDIA
Avignon, France, October 31, 2013 - The Kiwis had their captain’s run this morning ahead of Friday night’s sold-out match against France (kick-off 8am Saturday morning NZ-time). Thomas Leuluai was the only squad member not to take part. He is still having problems with his groin, which has meant he hasn’t had a game yet on tour. So Kieran Foran will again start at stand-off, with Shaun Johnson at halfback, in the Kiwis’ second Rugby League World Cup match.
The Kiwis only arrived into Avignon late on Monday, after flying from Liverpool to Nice and then jumping on a coach to Avignon. The team managed to escape the UK before the worst of the weather hit, but, unfortunately for the France team, they got caught up in things and were trapped in London for an extra night.
The Kiwis had a quiet start to the week, to allow the boys to digest the physical game against Samoa, along with their travels. Their main training day was Wednesday, which included weights and a field session watched by plenty of locals. The players who weren’t due to start against France attended a community event with French schoolchildren earlier that day. Sam Moa was a big hit with the kids, while Kieran Foran spent most of his time working alongside a Frenchman who looked suspiciously like Johnathan Thurston.
Other highlights of the week have included Manu Vatuvei’s dedication to learning French off a phone application and Greg Eastwood nailing a shot at goal from the touchline at training today. Despite this, he is not expected to be given the kicking duties against France.
The Kiwis travel back to Nice on Saturday and then the squad has time-off until Monday night (UK-time), when they land back in Leeds to get set for Friday night’s game against Papua New Guinea at Headingley.