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Thaiday passed fit for England clash

AAP logoAAP 12/11/2016 Ian McCullough

Sam Thaiday has been passed fit to face England in Sunday's Four Nations clash at the London Olympic Stadium after passing a fitness test on his injured knee.

The veteran forward sustained the problem against New Zealand last week and was rated as 50-50 to play against the hosts but coach Mal Meninga said having Thaiday at his disposal means he'll have his best possible 17 available to him.

"Sam's fine and that's exciting, we'll have our full strength side on the field," Meninga said.

"We're looking forward to putting on a good performance and better executing what we have done in the last two games."

Skipper Cameron Smith said Thaiday's inclusion is a huge boost ahead of what he expects to be the toughest match of the tour against a side desperate to end a decade-long wait for a victory over the Kangaroos.

A win or a draw for England will ensure they face Australia, who are already through to the final after Scotland's shock draw with New Zealand on Friday in Workington.

"It's important for us. He's in our best 17 and he's had a great tour so far," Smith said.

"He's great for the squad with the type of character he is. The most important thing is that he's a great footy player."

Smith believes Wayne Bennett will have England primed for this match after two underwhelming displays against the Kiwis and Scotland in their opening two matches.

"They've got a bit of a sniff now after Scotland's draw," Smith said.

"The talk all week was by how much, but now they just have to win to be in the final. That's probably a bit of extra motivation for their side.

"But take away what happened last night ... Wayne would have had these guys geared up for a solid performance."

England or Great Britain haven't beaten Australia for 10 years and London has historically been a happy hunting ground against the tourists in the past.

In 1990 and 1994 two powerful Kangaroos sides were put to the sword and Smith said he is expecting a ferocious battle.

"Traditionally the Kangaroos haven't done so well in London," he said.

"History shows we haven't had good results here. This side will be out to change that."

Kangaroos team: Darius Boyd, Valentine Holmes, Greg Inglis, Josh Dugan, Blake Ferguson, Johnathan Thurston, Cooper Cronk, Matt Scott, Cameron Smith, Aaron Woods, Matt Gillett, Boyd Cordner, Trent Merrin. Interchange: David Klemmer, Tyson Frizell, Sam Thaiday, Michael Morgan.

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