Shaun Johnson hopes he doesn’t need to repeat his Houdini act of a year ago, when the Kiwis play England in a crunch Four Nations rugby league Test in Dunedin.
The halfback rescued New Zealand from World Cup semi-final defeat against England at Wembley when he jinked through for a last-gasp try which he converted for a 20-18 win.
“Hopefully we don’t leave it down to the last minute this time,” he said on Thursday.
“It’s sort of a blur. It just sort of happened. There was nothing planned.
“It was a very proud moment but it was a long time ago and it’s irrelevant to this weekend. If we execute our roles properly, we won’t be in that position on Saturday night.”
Johnson, who has scored 116 points in 10 Tests, said the Kiwis wanted to bounce back from their sub-par performance against Samoa, who almost pulled off a huge upset before going down 14-12.
The 24-year-old said the Samoans did a good job of frustrating the New Zealanders in Whangarei.
“We have to stay calm and not get rattled if our first wave of attacks don’t succeed,” he said.
“We’re approaching the Test as a final. We’ve named our strongest team and so have England.
“We don’t want to lose any games. Our attitude is that if we win every game we will win the Four Nations.”
He plans to give Warriors teammate and England fullback Sam Tomkins as tough a time as possible under the lights with some high balls.
Johnson has played two pre-season matches at Forsyth Barr Stadium and rates the venue highly, saying the proximity of the crowd to the action made for an excellent atmosphere.