Kangaroo teammate Ryan Hoffman has sung Newcastle Knight Sione Mata’utia’s praises, following the 18-year-old's selection on the wing for Sunday's Four Nations clash against England in Melbourne.
Sione is set to make history as the Australian Kangaroo’s youngest representative when he runs out onto AAMI Park.
Hoffman, who spoke to the media on Wednesday at Melbourne’s Skydeck, said he had plenty of confidence in the young talent following his selection on Tuesday.
“It’s great for a kid, I got the first chance to have a look at him when I went over to PM XIII," Hoffman said of the young Knight.
"He really, really impressed me.
“For a young kid going into a fairly hostile environment in PNG, I’ve never seen a back run harder, to be quite honest."
Sione dropped off an extended bench for the Kangaroos opening game against New Zealand last weekend before earning his spot in the run on side this week.
“I think he’s going to handle it pretty well and it’s up to the rest of the team to give him a good platform to go on," he said.
“He’s given himself this opportunity and he’s a confident young kid, without being cocky."
On the back of the Kangaroos loss to New Zealand on Saturday, the Kangaroos have plenty to prove as they face the second game of the Four Nations clash against a solid English team.
“I think we are under pressure but it’s not pressure we can’t handle,” Hoffman assured.