Saturday, November 19, 2011


Wests Tigers centre and Magpies Junior Chris Lawrence says playing in the Four Nations final would be a dream come true.

The Wests Tigers and Australian centre and his team-mate in prop Keith Galloway have played in all 3 pool games and now have their fingers crossed for selection in the Australian side for the Four Nations Final against England at Elland Road, Leeds.

The Final will also be Darren Lockyer's last game but Lawrence admitted that there won't be any fairy tale finishes for one of the game's true legends unless the Aussies are on their game.

"England is dangerous all over the park. They have a great forward pack, young halves and some really dangerous outside backs. They've turned into a side that can not only go up the middle but they can go out wide and score from anywhere. We need to put in a good performance for 80 minutes or they'll get us," he said.

The mind games ahead of Saturday's Four Nations final were cranked up on Thursday with Australia coach Tim Sheens and his England counterpart Steve McNamara naming 21-man squads for the Elland Road decider.

Sheens has included every fit member of his squad for the game, but it's believed Jharal Yow Yeh has the upper hand in the battle for the right-wing spot ahead of Josh Morris.
It is likely to be the only change to the side that started against England in the 36-20 win at Wembley two weeks ago.

Tony Williams is available again following his one-match suspension, and will take his place back on the bench for Darren Lockyer's final game.
Luke Lewis has recovered from illness with Anthony Watmough and Chris Lawrence to overcome shoulder injuries and play.

Willie Tonga and Billy Slater are both unavailable due to injury.
England backrower Gareth Ellis has fully recovered from the back spasm that ruled him out of the win over New Zealand last week and will start.

"Gareth has trained all week very well, and we are very confident he will be fit to play," McNamara said.
The return of Ellis could lead to heartbreak for his Wests Tigers teammate Chris Heighington who could be the man to miss out.

Heighington has been involved in all three of England's games, but was overshadowed by Jon Wilkin's performance against the Kiwis.

Wilkin played the full 80 minutes as Ellis' replacement at the KC Stadium and was very impressive.
Speculation is rife among the English media that he could get the nod to start in the final over Heighington.

England: Sam Tomkins, Ryan Hall, Jack Reed, Karl Yeaman, Tom Briscoe, Kevin Sinfield, Rangi Chase, Danny McGuire, Gareth Widdop, James Graham, Garreth Carvell, James Roby, Jamie Peacock (capt), Adrian Morley, Ryan Bailey, Jon Wilkin, Ben Westwood, Gareth Ellis, Chris Heighington, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Carl Ablett. (four to be omitted).

Australia: Darius Boyd, Jharal Yow Yeh, Greg Inglis, Chris Lawrence, Akuila Uate, Darren Lockyer (capt), Johnathan Thurston, Matt Scott, Cameron Smith, Paul Gallen, Sam Thaiday, Luke Lewis, Anthony Watmough, Tony Williams, David Shillington, Keith Galloway, Cooper Cronk, Beau Scott, Daly Cherry-Evans, Josh Morris, Corey Parker.

Referee: Matt Cecchin (Australia)

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