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New Zealand vs. England: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and RLWC Preview

LOUGHBOROUGH, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 19:  Steve McNamara, the England coach looks on during the England training session held at Loughborough University on November 19, 2013 in Loughborough, England.  (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)
David Rogers/Getty Images
Nick AkermanFeatured ColumnistNovember 23, 2013

England's day of destiny in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup has arrived.

The last remaining co-host nation face a New Zealand team that will be more than confident of regaining the trophy they surprisingly snatched from Australia in 2008.

While overwhelming favourites to reach the final, the Kiwis have a difficult task ahead of them against Steve McNamara's side.

LEEDS, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 15:  Head coach Stephen Kearney of New Zealand watches on after the Rugby League World Cup Quarter Final match at Headingley Stadium on November 15, 2013 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Paul Thomas/Getty Images)
Paul Thomas/Getty Images

Date: Saturday, Nov. 23

Time: 1 p.m. local time (GMT)/8 a.m. ET

Venue: Wembley Stadium, London

Viewing Info: BBC One (UK)

Stream: BBC Sport website

 

 

Gareth Widdop Replaces Rangi Chase for England

McNamara isn't the kind of coach who chops his side up too often, but he has seen the need for Rangi Chase to be dropped, reported by Ash Howes of the Telegraph.

Chase's performances have been disappointing throughout the competition, but the timing of this decision is curious.

McNamara must have a serious lack of faith in his original half-back to boot him out of the team at the semifinal stage, especially when it is considered that Gareth Widdop has played just 54 minutes during the opening four games, per Sky Sports.

WIGAN, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 16:  Rangi Chase of England during the Rugby League World Cup Quarter Final match between England and France at the DW Stadium on November 16, 2013 in Wigan, England.  (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Michael Steele/Getty Images

Rob Burrow may be given the green light over Widdop in the starting lineup, but either way, McNamara is extremely brave to significantly alter his team at this point in the tournament.

England's performances throughout the competition have seen the nation do just enough to get by, highlighted by an underwhelming quarterfinal display against France. They won 34-6, but the scoreline did not accurately reflect England's lack of cohesion.

Should Chase's absence kickstart the other players into life, McNamara will become the subject of significant praise from the country's press. However, New Zealand will more than likely have a say in that.

 

Jason Nightingale Comes in for the Injured Manu Vatuvei

England's changes aren't the only alterations making headlines. While New Zealand's shake-up has been forced through injury, it might also have a huge impact on the match.

As reported by Sky Sports, Jason Nightingale is set to deputise for Manu Vatuvei, who has succumbed to the groin injury he sustained during the Kiwis' win over Scotland.

Nightingale failed to get on the scoresheet in New Zealand's 48-0 win over France, his only appearance of the competition so far, reported by the World Cup's official website.

LEEDS, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 15:  Manu Vatuvei (L) of New Zealand pulls away from Matthew Russell (R) of Scotland during the Rugby League World Cup Quarter Final match between New Zealand and Scotland at Headingley Carnegie Stadium on November 15, 2013 in Le
Michael Steele/Getty Images

The experienced winger possesses a respectful and cautious attitude toward England, underlining the professional nature of Stephen Kearney's squad, per Sky Sports:

We've had a couple of challenges but nothing like we're going to have on the weekend. We need to be up for that. That will be nothing other than a tough match.

I was very impressed by England in the second half of that game against Fiji. If they turn up the same on Saturday, the game could go either way.

While Nightingale is more than capable of helping the Kiwis to victory, Vatuvei's ability will be sorely missed, especially given the fact he has notched four tries in three appearances during this year's tournament.

Prediction: New Zealand 32-16 England

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