Dugan injury sours Roos' win over Kiwis

Monday, 15 May, 2017

That could mean fixtures in New Zealand interrupting the regular window for the news on Australian broadcast networks, or it could mean the matches are played during the day time.

Mal Meninga has built his coaching philosophy around the concept of loyalty, and that is reflected in this Kangaroos team, which certainly isn't made up of the best Australian players running around right now.

Meninga said there was an onus on both teams to promote the match especially given it's in a World Cup year.

They showed no signs of letting up in the second half, as five-eighth Jai Field skipped through a hapless New Zealand defence to cross and then covert his own try before Jayden Su'A joined the party minutes later to extend the margin to 40.

"So we felt it was best to get everyone in and have a couple of days down in Sydney where we could focus on stuff we wanted to do with the team, before coming up for the game on Friday".

Kiwis coach David Kidwell was proud of the second-half effort but bemoaned a poor kicking game in the first half that prevented any chance to place any pressure on the opposition.

While the coaches are happy to enter a verbal sparring session, the players themselves are more focussed on the numbers.

A veteran of 42-Tests for Australia himself, Meninga cited his edict to help grow rugby league globally as part of his job description, a duty he thinks the Kiwis are overlooking.

However the win - on a night skipper Cameron Smith celebrated his 50th Test - was soured by a possible fractured cheekbone to Josh Dugan that could rule him out of State of Origin.

Smith said he's incredibly honoured to reach the milestone. "I think I debuted against him in 2006".

The Kiwis have won just one from six since Kidwell took over from Stephen Kearney last year and Friday's result was a blow to their confidence heading into the World Cup at the end of the year.

The two late tries to New Zealand meant the final scoreline didn't give a true reflection of the Kiwis, who were 30-0 down at one point.

The 27-year-old flyer said he was intent on stringing consecutive performances together as the Raiders look to realise their potential.

"But I've also put in a lot of hard work and I've had a lot of support behind me from my family".

"When we played in Canberra in 2012 we did a similar thing, where we started off in Sydney and then came across and we did the same for Newcastle past year", Hayton said.

He saved at least two tries by bringing down Kieran Foran and Jason Taumalolo on the line as the Kiwis peppered his side of the field.

"And for the first time, in my experience, we started to talk about being winners".