Rookie five-eighth Te Maire Martin warns the Kiwis can't afford to focus all their attention on Fijian maestro Jarryd Hayne in Saturday's Rugby League World Cup quarter-final in Wellington.

The 22-year-old playmaker will make his third test outing and second starting appearance of the tournament after scoring three tries in New Zealand's 74-6 romp over Scotland a fortnight ago.

The North Queensland young gun comes in for Brisbane No 6 Kodi Nikorima, who was dropped by Kiwis coach David Kidwell after some glaring defensive misses in the second-half of Saturday's 28-22 defeat to Tonga in Hamilton.

With Hayne directing their attack from five-eighth, Fiji are high on confidence after piling on 32 tries to beat Italy 38-10, Wales 72-6 and USA 58-12, but Martin says the Kiwis need to concentrate on stopping their forward momentum.


"They're quite similar to Tonga in that they've got some big forwards that have got footwork and that late offload and good halves and some fast outside backs," said Martin.

"You can't just focus on [Hayne], you've got to focus on the other forwards too. Just try and win those tackles first and slow that middle down and try to minimise the offloads.

"Trying to go forward when your forwards aren't isn't too easy, but he's got that X-factor in him.

"But it all comes back to winning the middle first. If that roll-on doesn't happen they don't get that momentum and get through."

Having watched from the stands as Tonga roared back from 16-2 down at halftime to pile on five second-half tries at Waikato Stadium, Martin knows the onus is on him and Shaun Johnson to improve the side's kicking and option-taking on attack.

"Obviously last week didn't go to plan and that's footy sometimes, so it's pretty exciting being a part of this group knowing there's no next week," he said.

"I've seen what could be done a little bit better and we've gone through that as a spine this week."

The two halves have been rooming together throughout the campaign and Martin says their growing friendship is helping them to gel out on the park.

"Everything flows pretty nicely at training. We'll soon see when it comes to Saturday but we connected pretty well in our last game against Scotland and that comes off the back of how our forwards played.

"He's pretty easy to get along with. He's got a lot of experience too with his kicking so it makes my job easier when he's doing his job really well.

"We're getting a lot closer and it's pretty cool to be around those kind of people - you grow up watching them and then get to play alongside them and be roommates with them.

"It's all getting really comfortable now and that shows on the field when you've got that combination going."