John Bateman says England will take a ‘boring’ win when they face Australia tomorrow.
He has been recalled to the national team in place of his Wigan team-mate Liam Farrell as Wayne Bennett’s outfit try and claim a famous win at London’s Olympic Stadium – and reach the Four Nations final at Anfield the following week.
Bateman sat out of the squad which beat Scotland 38-12 last weekend, with England facing criticism for a performance which lacked spark.
And the second-rower admits the players won’t be worrying themselves with what the London crowd, or the BBC audience, think of their display as long as they get the all-important win.
“It’s one of those, we are playing in front of a big crowd and a national audience,” explained Bateman.
“But we’d take a boring win! The result is all that matters against Australia.
“You always want to be involved in the best games but it doesn’t always work out that way. We just need to beat Australia.”
Bateman’s comments carry a similar theme to coach Wayne Bennett’s, who said this week he wasn’t into ‘cheap talk’ following criticism of his succinct approach to answering questions from the media after last Saturday’s win over the Bravehearts.
And Bateman says the players, none of whom know what it’s like to beat the green and golds, are also taking a business-like approach to the game.
“I will go into the game and do my own thing,” the 23-year-old said.
“I just have to do my job as best I can, and the rest of the players will.
“We’re really looking forward to it, everyone has their job and we know the plan and what we need to do.”
And while Bateman says the result tomorrow is more important than wowing viewers, he does want to soothe the itch of losing at the London Stadium last year.
Bateman played at centre in last year’s second Test against New Zealand – a 9-2 defeat in front of a 44,393 crowd.
And with another bumper attendance expected this weekend, he is looking forward to having another shot a registering a win at the stadium.
“It’s good to play games down here, and while winning is the main thing, it’s important we play in the capital,” said Bateman.
“The stadium was great to play at last year and I’m looking forward to seeing how it’s changed now West Ham have moved in. And we’re confident. It’s a big job but we all think we can do it.”