Brisbane rookie Jamayne Isaako is set cap a rapid rise when he makes his international debut on the right wing for the Kiwis in Sunday's (NZT) test against England in Denver.

New coach Michael Maguire will reveal his side tomorrow, but Isaako – one of seven new faces named in the 19-man squad on Sunday - has been told he will start the match at Mile High Stadium.

"I've had a couple of conversations with Michael and obviously spoke about positions and where I'm going to be put," said Isaako.

"Obviously I think I'll be starting on the right wing and hopefully things go well."


The Christchurch-born 22-year-old played one NRL game last year and is enjoying a breakout season, having scored eight tries in 14 appearances on the end of the Broncos backline.

Coming from a rugby union background, Isaako had limited experience in the 13-man game, but was recruited as a teenager to play for Cronulla's under 20s side before signing with Brisbane in 2016.

"I played one season for my uncle's team, who he was coaching at the time, but my background growing up was always rugby," he said.

"I got picked up by a couple of scouts from the Cronulla Sharks and in 2012 I came over to Sydney and everything kicked off from there."

The former Junior Kiwi's strong ability in the air and dynamic broken field running has seen him tagged as 'the new Israel Folau' and Isaako is happy to be compared to the dual Australian international.

"I've always idolised Izzy and some of the crazy things he's done in rugby league.

"Growing up I didn't know too much about rugby league but if anything I always watched the Broncs and followed Izzy. It's definitely crazy to be put alongside Izzy."

The Kiwis 19-man squad this morning completed a gym workout before having their first run together in a field session at Denver University.

Mystery surrounds the make-up of the rest of the Kiwis outside backs but Isaako spent time running alongside right-centre contenders Esan Marsters and Broncos teammate Jordan Kahu.

"We had a couple of combinations going, Esan at the start and then had Jordan swap in for a couple of runs there," he said.

"I felt pretty comfortable training alongside a couple of new faces. We have a short amount of time to build that combination but after the first session I think it went pretty well."

Isaako has also proven himself as a more than capable goal kicker at club level, having banged over 45 goals with a 79 per cent success rate, but was unsure if he'd be handed the tee during his first test outing. Senior Kiwis leader Issac Luke and Kahu are among the side's more experienced sharp-shooters.

"There's a few blokes putting their hands up for the kicking duties but we'll find out as the week goes along."

Isaako appears set to face off against powerful England left wing and 31-test veteran Ryan Hall, but admitted he knew little about the opposition line-up.

However, he's more familiar with his Broncos mentor and England coach Wayne Bennett, and is comfortable he'll handle whatever is thrown at him.

"To be completely honest I don't know too many of the England players and who I would be coming up against. The only thing I do know is whoever I have I'm looking forward to the challenge.

"I have a fair idea of what (Bennett) likes to do and the game style that he likes to play so I have a fair idea of where he's going to want to be attacking."

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