Follow live updates as the Kiwis take on England in Denver.

The Kiwis halves pairing of Kodi Nikorima and Te Maire Martin will have an extra challenge against England, due to the special nuances of Mile High Stadium in Denver.

The young combination already have a lot on their plate, having to guide a New Zealand team laden with debutants through the match.

But the spectacular home of the Denver Broncos add an additional test for the playmakers.


The field is narrower – around two to three metres – than a normal NRL set up, and also features tiny in goal areas.

Adding to that, the surface is quick, like a putting green at Augusta National, which means the kicks won't hold up as they normally would.

"The field is a little bit smaller," observed Kiwis assistant coach Ben Gardiner after the captain's run on Saturday. "It's definitely a little bit shorter in terms of the width, and the in goals."

It means that Nikorima and Martin will need to be extra precise, both with their clearing kicks and fifth tackle plays close to the line.

"It's about making sure our kicking game is on song," said Gardiner. "If you are kicking long you need to be careful you are not kicking towards the in goal and more towards the touch line. Also look at bombs rather than balls into the in goals…the in goals are quick and the surface is very quick."

Nikorima (eight tests) and Martin (three) are relatively experienced compared to the rest of the backline, and played together at test level before.

They've also both featured in NRL Grand finals, and need to bring poise and organization to their work against an experienced England unit.

"We have told them to play their natural game," said Gardner. "They communicate really well together, there is a combination there and they are both in relatively good form for their clubs."