oth sides got off to winning starts, albeit in contrasting fashion. Richard Agar's French team edged out Papua New Guinea 9-8 thanks to a William Barthau drop goal following Thomas Bosc's early score.
The Kiwis meanwhile ran in eight tries as they defeated Samoa 42-24 in Warrington on Sunday, Manu Vatuvei scoring a hat-trick.
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New Zealand are without Thomas Leuluai who will not be risked due to an ongoing groin complaint while superstar Sonny Bill Williams is rested.
Head coach Stephen Kearney has confirmed that Vatuvei picked up knocks to both his knee and his ankle in the clash with Samoa.
As a result, Jason Nightingale and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will start on the wings.
"Manu Vatuvei picked up a knock to the knee and ankle on Sunday night," said Kearney. "He mightn't be able to train fully this week, but it was always my intention to give Jason a run.
"Roger had a good game against Samoa and it'll be good for him to have another match this weekend."
Bryson Goodwin and Krisnan Inu will start in the centres.