Kiwis excited by London visit
PUBLISHED: 15:57 05 November 2015 | UPDATED: 15:57 05 November 2015
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New Zealand set to take on England at Olympic Stadium
New Zealand’s Rugby League team were taken on a traditional open bus tour of London to experience the sights and sounds of the capital ahead of this weekend’s match against England at the Olympic Stadium.
The team visited key London landmarks such as Harrods, Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, the London Eye, Tower Bridge and the Houses of Parliament.
Stephen Kearney’s side, currently ranked the best in the world, take on England on Saturday in the first-ever Rugby League game to be played at the Olympic Stadium.
Last weekend, New Zealand were defeated by a strong England side in the first match in the three-test series in Hull, meaning the weekend’s game in Stratford is a potential series decider, with the Kiwis keen to avoid defeat in London.
Head coach Kearney said: “Playing at the Olympic Stadium this weekend against England will be a wonderful opportunity.
“We had a tough time up in Hull last Sunday and are determined to keep the series alive by beating England on Saturday.
“It’s been a great year for New Zealand rugby. Following the success of our rugby union friends in the World Cup, we hope to continue our country’s success in London against England and we are so pleased to be able to be a part of this wonderful stadium’s history, being part of the first ever Rugby League match to be played there.”
New Zealand co-captain Issac Luke added: “We really enjoyed our tour of London in one of these traditional open-top London buses. Seeing the famous sights such as Buckingham Palace, the London Eye and Tower Bridge has got us all excited to play in London this weekend.
“We are feeling confident that England won’t be able to put this test to bed on Saturday and we will be victorious, taking the series down to the last match in Wigan next weekend.
“Even though we are the top-ranked team in the world, England have some strong players with the likes of Sean O’Loughlin and James Graham causing a serious threat, so we have to be wary of their strengths and be prepared for them.
“There is no doubt that playing at the Olympic Stadium will spur England on following the London 2012 Olympic Games so it will be a fantastic match and very entertaining for fans.”
*England face New Zealand in the Olympic Stadium on Saturday 7 November in the second of a three-match Test series which started at the KC Stadium (Hull) on November 1 and concludes at the DW Stadium in Wigan on Saturday 14 November.
Tickets to England v New Zealand at the Olympic Stadium cost from £22 for adults and £10 for concessions and are available at rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or via the Rugby League Ticket Hotline on 0844 856 1113.