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Manly-bound forward Martin Taupau will start from the bench for the Kiwis in the first Test against England.

New Zealand back-rower Martin Taupau appears to have slapped a media ban on himself when it comes to discussing his 'Theatregate' transfer to Manly.

Taupau's early release from his Wests Tigers contract leaked out when the contract was accidentally sent to a Canadian theatre critic instead of Manly chief executive Joe Kelly.

But the Kiwis star didn't see the funny side of the affair when he was asked about it following Sunday's 26-12 defeat to England at KC Stadium.

"What are you talking about?" he said to

"I'm not talking about that. I've got no comment on that. My main focus is to play for the Kiwis."

Taupau was to face the media on match eve but was excused because of the publicity surrounding the bizarre leaking of his early release from Concord.

Asked how his preparation for the Test had been affected, Taupau answered: "Nothing's changed. I just focus on my job as an individual and I just come on and do what I do."