Australian captain Darren Lockyer says he can't remember more interest in a rugby league Test than what the Kangaroos are dealing with in the lead-up to Friday night's showdown with New Zealand in Brisbane.
Australia is under pressure to restore pride in the green and gold jumper after losing its world champion's tag to the Kiwis in last year's Tri Nations final in England. Lockyer says his team is primed to exact revenge, with 12 players from the side humbled 24-0 by New Zealand in that Tri Nations final backing up on Friday under new coach Ricky Stuart.
The Kangaroos have just completed a weights session and will train later this afternoon in Sydney.
Meanwhile, Kiwis halfback Thomas Leuluai says New Zealand will look to use its powerful forwards to gain ascendancy in Friday's night's rugby league Test against Australia.
The Kiwis have noted that Australia is only taking three specialist props into the game and want to dominate in the forwards to allow stars Benji Marshall and Sonny Bill Williams to come up with the game breaking plays. Leulaui has also expressed interest in playing alongside Marshall for premiers Wests Tigers in the NRL next season after Scott Prince heads to the Gold Coast.
The 20-year-old is currently on a one-year deal with Harlequins in the English Super League.