World News

New Zealand kicked out of the World Cup by Fiji

New Zealand kicked out of the World Cup by Fiji

Both teams were promoting second phase and wanting to play open football, but while Fiji were picking their moments and continuing to finish their sets, the Kiwis were plain sloppy, making eight first-half errors and hardly visiting the attacking 20.

Renown for his support play and willingness to take on the line, the 21-year-old has been forced to endure a tumultuous start to his career at club level with the Knights, but having developed his trade under hard circumstance, Levi will be eager to prove that behind a premier forward pack, he has what it takes to be a long-term player for New Zealand. The Kiwis lose the ball after a loose carry from Martin Taupau - Fiji have a scrum just on their own 40m line.

They levelled the scores with a Shaun Johnson penalty early in the second half but Fiji refused to let them get a grip.

Fiji: 1. Kevin Naiqama (c) 2.

He stepped off his left foot to beat the front line then pinned the ears back and made a beeline for the tryline, but close attention from some Kiwi defenders forced an error.

"It doesn't matter who puts on that Kiwi jersey, there is always that pride and passion there, and it is the same with the Fiji Bati", said 32-year-old Sims. Suliasi Vunivalu 3. Taane Milne 4.

The sun sets over Westpac Stadium during the Rugby League World Cup Quarter Final between New Zealand and Fiji
HANNAH PETERS GETTY IMAGES The sun sets over Westpac Stadium during the Rugby League World Cup Quarter Final between New Zealand and Fiji

Those changes are of little concern to Fiji, Naiqama says.

New Zealand Kiwis fullback Roger Tuivasa-Sheck looks to break the tackle of Tongan interchange Peni Terepo during the Rugby League World Cup 2017 Pool B match between New Zealand Kiwis and Tonga played at Waikato Stadium in Hamilton.

The Kiwis had one last roll of the dice with an attacking set in the final minutes, although Jordan Rapana's grubber in-goal couldn't sit up for Brad Takairangi.

They dominated field position in the opening quarter but despite battering the Kiwis line, phenomenal defence from the hosts meant they only had a Apisai Koroisau penalty goal to show for their efforts.

"We can match the Tongans in terms of the number of spectators because we have a lot of Fijians living in that part of NZ particularly in the lower harbour areas of North Island".

Facing the Bati for the first time, coach David Kidwell has responded to last week's shock loss by naming Danny Levi at hooker, while Te Maire Martin comes into the starting side in a move that sees Kodi Nikorima relegated to the role of bench utility. Adam Blair 14. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 15.

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