Scots ready to eye-ball All Blacks
EDINBURGH, 19 September - Scotland say they cannot afford to be intimidated by tournament favourites New Zealand in Edinburgh on Sunday.
Coach Frank Hadden remains tight-lipped about the team he'll name on Friday but speculation is rife he'll save his best players for the match against Italy in Saint-Etienne on 29 September.
"We have to go in looking at playing to win," centre Andrew Henderson said on Wednesday.
"We've got to go into it with a positive frame of mind.
"It's important, like every game. I'm not sure what is going to happen just yet.
"We are all ready to play, we are all keen to play. Everyone appreciates the All Blacks are the best in the world and we would all like to have a go."
Henderson, who suffered a severe dead leg against South Africa last month, is yet to play in the 2007 IRB Rugby World Cup but he hoped to be selected for Sunday's showdown.
Scotland and Italy battling for top-eight spot
The All Blacks are expected to claim the No.1 spot in Pool C, with second place and a quarter-final berth turning into a battle between Scotland and Italy.
For New Zealand, flanker Reuben Thorne will start in place of Chris Jack in the second row, while Luke McAlister and Conrad Smith are the centres.
Scotland scrum half Mike Blair said New Zealand would be pose a massive challenge, no matter what players they fielded.
"I think it's not something we are too uptight about. Whatever squad they put out, it's going to be a competitive fight," Blair said.
Blair said Scotland were focused solely on the New Zealand clash, despite the crucial Italy match coming only six days later.
"We've got three games in 11 days. We have to focus on the game that's coming up," Blair said.