Tate desperate for crack at 'dead rubber' - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tate desperate for crack at 'dead rubber'

Joe Barton 02/11/2010 03:55:00 PM Comments (0)

It's the dead rubber that everyone wants a piece of with Australian centre Brent Tate desperate to take part in Saturday night's Four Nations rugby league showdown with New Zealand.

The clash has been written off as a dead rubber due to the two teams facing off again a week later in the tournament final at Suncorp Stadium, but with his spot in the final on the line, Tate sees it differently.

After a less-than-clinical 34-14 victory over England last Sunday, a disappointed coach Tim Sheens warned his team that changes would be made for the Kiwi clash at Eden Park.

Outside backs Darius Boyd and Chris Lawrence are both expected to be drafted into the side, with utilities Todd Carney and Robbie Farah tipped to figure on the bench, while forwards Greg Bird and Matt Scott are also likely to make their first Four Nations appearances.

With Boyd and Lawrence both with an eye on Tate's centre spot, the 28-year-old admits he does not want to be on the outer one week out from the tournament final.

"It is (a concern), obviously you'd rather be playing if you can be, but that's out of my hands now that's up to Tim (Sheens) and the coaching staff," he told AAP from Auckland on Monday.

"I just hope I get another game and can be there for the final as well.

"I know people are calling it a dead rubber, but we're playing for spots in the final so there's plenty to play for.

"It's a huge challenge for us as an Australian team and hopefully I'll get a game this Saturday night and we can go out there and prove our worth."

But Tate fired back at critics who have written off the Australian team after the England performance, saying it was a good thing that they were winning without playing their best football.

"We have (copped a bit), obviously as a group we were pretty disappointed as well with the second half performance," he said.

"But I guess the good thing about that is we were still able to win by plenty and we've still got a lot of improvement in us."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2021 AAP

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