Segeyaro set for tough reception on Saturday

Both camps are ticking their preparation box with 48 hours remaining before the Prime Minister’s 13 rugby league fixture between PNG and Australia is played.

The 11th edition of the annual challenge will be played under the lights at Sir John Guise Stadium in Port Moresby on Saturday.

In a combined media conference this afternoon, PNG PMs 13 coach Stanley Tepend gave a thumbs up for his troops' preparation.

“The camp is good; they all play against each in the Digicel Cup and have now bonded well as a group.”

His counterpart Ivan Cleary said, “Many (of the players in the squad) play together and the combination will there.

“It’s a professional sport and preparation timeframe is not a problem,’ added Trent Merrin, Australia PM’s 13 captain.

Meanwhile, this year’s match is the most anticipated with PNG born James Segeyaro turning his back on his country of birth to wear the green and gold jumper in order to achieve his dreams of playing for Queensland and the Kangaroos.         

When questioned by Loop PNG, Cleary said “Segeyaro is emotional” and it was a personal decision. 

With the home crowd expected to boo him when he runs onto the field, Segeyaro will come under the microscope of the PNG boys in defence and attack.

PNG captain Albert Patak declined to reveal what is in store for the man of Goroka and Tolai parentage  when he receives his first ball but gave a hint that the defence will be up in his face.

Charles Yapumi