New Zealand Kiwi Ferns coach Justin Morgan says the side have the utmost respect for the Jillaroos as tensions continue to simmer following the World Cup 9s final.
The lead-up to Friday night's Test match at WIN Stadium has some added spice after the Kiwi Ferns claimed the World Cup 9s trophy in their first win over the Jillaroos in three years.
Australian skipper Ali Brigginshaw took aim at the Kiwi Ferns for not shaking hands with her side following the 17-15 loss.
That claim came just a day after Kiwi Ferns centre Jules Newman labelled the Jillaroos as cocky during the final.
Morgan, Jillaroos coach Brad Donald and respective captains Brigginshaw and Honey Hireme-Smiler fronted the media on Wednesday to try and clear the air heading into the clash.
Morgan said he welcomed players having the ability to speak their minds but that Newman's comments shouldn't come across as disrespectful.
"The one thing that I do know is that I know my players, they are humble, respectful and have a great deal of time for all the Jillaroos," Morgan said.
"We all know that players get interviewed and sometimes say things in the heat of the moment, spur of the moment without thinking.
"We had a chat, she was a little bit upset because the last thing she wanted to do was be disrespectful.
"She plays the game hard. I think at the same time we need to acknowledge people that are passionate and love to win and hate to lose.
"That's great, that's what you want in sport. It's a little bit of banter, I think the most important thing is there's no disrespect there.
"They go out and play hard, train hard and a little bit of banter sells newspapers, gets people interested in the game."
Morgan said he hoped players wouldn't be turned off by the thought of speaking their mind, albeit in a humble and respectful way.
"With so many players that give vanilla answers all the time, especially in the men's game with all this media training, as soon as something doesn't come out of that vanilla textbook everyone jumps on it," he said.
"That's the case in this scenario. It wasn't a stock-standard answer. There was a bit of emotion and feeling and all of a sudden people with the microphones and cameras go that's something and it snowballs."
Jillaroos coach Donald could see the lighter side to the build-up as all major television networks, websites, and newspapers were in attendance to cover the conference.
"My comments on it, one, it's very refreshing," he said.
"The women's game, these girls have worked together for a number of years either with their clubs or against each other so we want to watch it.
"Potentially it was too easy for us in the first three games last week and the Kiwi Ferns were outstanding in the final.
"We certainly won't bring that complacency we had in the final."
Both sides will wrap up their preparations for the Test match on Thursday with final training sessions at WIN Stadium.
Final decisions on respective forwards Simaima Taufa (Australia) and Aieshaleigh Smalley (New Zealand), who both have ankle concerns, will be made prior to kick off.
Be there live at WIN Stadium for the Test Match Double Header. Visit nrl.com/tickets to purchase tickets.