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Scotland not out to aid England over NZ

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 8/11/2016 Ian Laybourn

Scotland coach Steve McCormack insists he is not out to do any favours for England in their Four Nations match against New Zealand in Workington.

England struggled against the Scots in Coventry before prevailing 38-12 and are now hoping McCormack's men can pull off a major shock on Friday or at least restrict the Kiwis' winning margin to improve their own chances of reaching next week's final.

If England beat Australia at the London Stadium on Sunday, the two finalists are likely to be determined by points difference, with the Kiwis currently 25 points behind the host nation and 53 behind the Kangaroos.

Jesse Bromwich © Getty Images Jesse Bromwich

A New Zealand victory by under 30 points would leave England with the simple equation of having to win two days later.

However, that will play no part in McCormack's thinking.

"I'm not bothered about them, I'm not bothered one single bit, I'm just bothered about what we do," McCormack said.

"It's about making sure these lot are galvanised this week. They were pretty bashed after that game as you'd expect but they've trained well the last couple of days and the mood is really good."

Friday's game will be the first meeting between the two nations since the quarter-finals of the 2013 World Cup, which the Kiwis won 40-4 at Headingley.

It will provide Scotland with a chance to gauge their improvement over the intervening period.

McCormack is adamant Scotland have improved and says that has continued in the Four Nations, where their performance against England was superior to that in the 54-12 opening loss to Australia.

Scotland captain Danny Brough and centre Kane Linnett both sat out Tuesday's training session in Preston with ankle injuries but are expected to face the Kiwis.

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