Soccer-Australia's Rowles ready to take on Mbappe and Benzema

Socceroos centre half Kye Rowles has declared himself fit to take on French strike duo Kylian Mbappe and Karim Benzema in Australia's World Cup opener on Tuesday despite his recent foot injury. Yeah, come next Tuesday, I'll be ready." Australia also play Denmark and Tunisia in Group D in their fifth successive visit to the World Cup finals.


Reuters | Doha | Updated: 18-11-2022 00:45 IST | Created: 18-11-2022 00:45 IST
Soccer-Australia's Rowles ready to take on Mbappe and Benzema
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Socceroos centre half Kye Rowles has declared himself fit to take on French strike duo Kylian Mbappe and Karim Benzema in Australia's World Cup opener on Tuesday despite his recent foot injury. Rowles broke a bone in his foot at the end of August playing for Hearts in the Scottish Premier League but thinks he is now ready to shut down what many believe is the strongest strike partnership at the tournament.

"Obviously, it's not been the perfect run in for myself," he told reporters at Australia's training camp on Thursday. "But I know that once I put my head down and get out there that the fitness level is kind of -- I'm not focused on that. I'm just focused on doing my job for the team.

"And obviously, once you get into the game and you've got the likes of Benzema and Mbappe around you, you don't have time to think about how you're feeling and stuff like that. "You just have to do your job and make sure they're nullified as best as possible. I mean, I'm feeling strong anyway, and very fit."

Rowles conceded that there were times when he thought he might not have made enough progress after his injury for coach Graham Arnold to include him the squad for his first World Cup. "Yeah, pretty much, like the whole time," he said.

"I had to come back super-fast and there's always the risk of pushing the limit a bit too much and I didn't really have time for even a tiny little setback where it's three or four days. "Hats off to everyone involved for getting me back to a playing level. And now that I'm fit and ready, I'm just getting fitter and stronger every day and sharper as well. Yeah, come next Tuesday, I'll be ready."

Australia also play Denmark and Tunisia in Group D in their fifth successive visit to the World Cup finals.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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