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Kearney confident Warriors will lift

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 26/04/2016

Kearney confident Warriors will lift © Richard Sellers / PA Archive Images Kearney confident Warriors will lift Kiwis coach Stephen Kearney holds no fears that any Warriors players he selects will carry over their indifferent NRL form into next week's Test against Australia in Newcastle.

The Warriors have just three wins from eight matches this year, and languish in 13th place on the ladder after Monday's 42-0 loss to Melbourne.

"They didn't perform well last night, and I'm sure the Warriors coach isn't happy with the way they're playing," Kearney said on Tuesday.

"But I'm pretty confident that once we get them into the Kiwis environment, we can get them on board with what we're after."

Kearney said it had barely been a week since the Warriors played their best game of the season, beating the Bulldogs 24-20 in Wellington.

And he said the given wisdom 12 months ago was that he shouldn't pick Shaun Johnson for the Anzac Test in Brisbane, won 26-12 by the Kiwis.

"People were saying I shouldn't be selecting Shaun, and he was one of our best players in that particular Test match.

"Once they get into our environment, we can get them up to speed."

Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga named his squad on Tuesday, including four players set to make their Australian debut.

Among the newcomers in the 19-man squad was Fijian flyer Semi Radradra, alongside Kangaroos rookies Blake Ferguson, Michael Morgan and Josh McGuire.

Radradra nominated for Kangaroos selection earlier this month after qualifying under residency requirements. He has previously played four Tests for Fiji.

Kearney had no problems with Radradra's selection in an Australian squad which he said contained few surprises.

"The rules say he can play for Australia. That's for Mal and the selectors, and I'm sure they're comfortable with it.

"Whoever they pick in the Australian jumper, they're always going to be a quality team," he said.

"For me, my focus is on who we're going to select in our team."

Kearney will name his Kiwis squad for the May 6 Test on Sunday evening as the New Zealanders hunt their fourth successive win over Australia.

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