An England or Great Britain side haven’t been able to defeat the Kangaroos since the 2006 Tri-Nations which was incidentally the day current captain Cameron Smith first tasted the famous international rivalry.
“I came off the bench in that game at Sydney,” he recalled. “It was the first time I’d played against England or Great Britain and I got a hostile welcome.
“I got a smack across the face in the first run I took. That was from Terry Newton actually, he was a tough hooker.
“They were a great football side and they have been ever since but we’ve been fortunate to get victories against them.
“We know that it’s a different prospect this year and we won’t be going down there (to Cardiff) with any thoughts other than that it’s going to be a very tough one for us to play particularly for our first game.
“We haven’t played together as yet but the English side have so we’re preparing for a very tough game.”
“I didn’t see the England match but our coaches went and had a look,” he admitted.
“A few of the players had an opportunity to come up to Old Trafford and watch Manchester United play.
“It’s a special thing. I don’t think any of our players have ever played at Old Trafford and being down in Australia, we don’t get to see too much EPL as it’s always on early in the mornings.”
And Smith says he can relate to the pressures that come with being the favourites ahead of a tournament for which his side are priced at just 4/11 to win at Old Trafford next month.
He added: “Whenever you’re representing Australia in rugby league, there’s always an expectation to succeed and get the win.
“We’re aware of that but we’re not going to go put ourselves under any extra pressure.
“We know we have a great squad and that if we play well, we’re very capable of doing something special in this tournament.”