International league returns to Mt Smart for the first time since 2006 when the Kangaroos prevailed 30-18. The Kiwis will be led by young captain Dallin Watene-Zelezniak are $2.90 outsiders with the Kangaroos $1.37 favourites. The last time the trans-Tasman rivals met on New Zealand soil was in the 2014 Four Nations final when the Kiwis won 22-18. Over the years — and the history between the two nations stretches back to 1908 when they met at the Sydney Cricket Ground — they have battled it out on a number of grounds in New Zealand including the Auckland Domain, Basin Reserve and, in more than any other, Carlaw Park. A crowd of 26,000 turned up at Rotorua International Stadium in July 1989 to watch Australia win 8-0 a week after they had met at Mt Smart for the first time where the visitors also won by eight points. They played their first World Cup game in France in 1954 where the 'Roos won 34-15. Overall they have met 135 times with Australia ahead 100-32 with three draws. In 23 matches in the last 10 years Australia have won 15, New Zealand five and one was drawn. The women first clashed in 1995 and in the last 10 years have played six with the Kiwi Ferns winning four to the Jillaroos' two. The two nations will also clash at junior level in the first of today's curtainraisers.
● Internationals, today, Junior Kiwis v Junior Kangaroos 2.30pm; Kiwi Ferns v Jillaroos 5pm; Kiwis v Kangaroos 7pm.