New Kiwi squad members Lewis Brown and Sam McKendry have been included in the New Zealand Maori side to take on England at Mount Smart Stadium on Saturday night.

Vodafone Warriors back rower Brown (24) and Penrith prop McKendry (21), along with Brisbane winger Antonio Winterstein (22) were the new faces named in the Kiwis’ 2010 Four Nations squad last week.

While they won’t be making their Test debuts for the Kiwis in their one-off Test against Samoa in Saturday night’s main game, Kiwi coach Stephen Kearney said playing for the Maori was a huge honour for them.

“They’ve been excited being part of the Kiwi camp this week and we’re really keen for them to have some playing time,” he said.

Maori coaches Richie Blackmore and Mark Horo have included the duo on the interchange bench. Brown joins Vodafone Warriors team-mates Kevin Locke, Aaron Heremaia and Russell Packer – who are all in the starting line-up – while McKendry has a club-mate in the Maori team in winger Sandor Earl.

Leading the side is 22-Test veteran Clinton Toopi (31), who is teamed in the centres with experienced dual Australian international Timana Tahu. Tahu traces his Maori heritage through his late father.

Only one of the 17 players in the Maori team doesn’t play for a club in the NRL or the English Super League – winger Kaine Manihera, who’s with the Northern Pride in the Queensland Cup. Three players – Rangi Chase, Weller Hauraki and Huntly-born Jeremy Smith – are with English clubs.

NZ Maori v England

Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland – 5.30pm (NZ time), Sat, Oct 16

Referee: Leon Williamson (NZ)

NZ Maori team: Kevin Locke, Aaron Heremaia, Russell Packer (Vodafone Warriors); Sandor Earl (Panthers); Timana Tahu, Justin Horo (Eels); Clinton Toopi – Capt, Bodene Thompson (Titans); Kaine Manihera (Northern Pride QLD) ; A J Taumataa, James Tamou (Cowboys); Rangi Chase (Castleford); Weller Hauraki (Crusaders). Interchange: Jeremy Smith (Salford); Kevin Proctor (Storm); Sam Mckendry (Panthers); Lewis Brown (Vodafone Warriors).

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