You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Kiwis to learn fate of injured backs

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 30/10/2016

<span style="font-size:13px;">Veteran backs Thomas Leuluai and Jason Nightingale await important medical updates as the Kiwis turn their attention to facing Australia in the Four Nations.</span> © Hannah Peters/Getty Images Veteran backs Thomas Leuluai and Jason Nightingale await important medical updates as the Kiwis turn their attention to facing Australia in the Four Nations. Kiwis coach David Kidwell hopes medical clouds hovering over backs Thomas Leuluai and Jason Nightingale can clear before their second Four Nations Test against Australia.

Leuluai was deemed to have suffered concussion during New Zealand's 17-16 win over England in Huddersfield, although the stand-off believed he was wrongly diagnosed.

St George Illawarra winger Nightingale suffered ankle damage and, like fellow-veteran Leuluai, should learn the extent of his injury on Monday.

Kidwell says props Jesse Bromwich and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves emerged unscathed after taking leg niggles into the Test.

The coach was surprised there weren't more injuries following a ferocious clash of two muscular packs.

"The guys coming off the field said they'd never experienced anything like that in the NRL, especially the forwards," he said.

"To get the monkey off the back is a good feeling but now it's all about the recovery. We've got a big game on Saturday."

Kidwell's "monkey" was the 26-6 Test loss to Australia in Perth two weeks earlier.

Following his first Test in charge, he admitted to making fundamental mistakes, including his use of the interchange bench which resulted in key forward Jason Taumalolo spending an extended period on the sideline.

"We all learned some harsh lessons there and it was about making improvements," he said.

"We sat down and nutted that (interchange strategy) out and that became a crucial part against England."

Kidwell says simple time together explained their improvement from the Perth Test and he expects his team to be better again for the rematch against a Kangaroos side who crushed Scotland in 54-12 in the tournament opener .

Kidwell suggested there will be minimal change for Saturday's clash in Coventry but is keen to give other squad members game time against Scotland in Workington a week later.

"If everything goes well, I'd like to play everyone on tour," he said.

"But we have a focus on where we want to be in three weeks' time (the final)."

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon