Faumuina preparing for Mealamu send-off

Date published: October 28 2015

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New Zealand's Charlie Faumuina is preparing for a final farewell for fellow front row club member Kevin Mealamu on Saturday.

Mealamu will likely come off the bench for the Rugby World Cup Final against Australia, where he will earn his 132nd test cap. At 36-years-old, the veteran has indicated he will retire from international rugby after the World Cup.

Faumuina revealed that he has felt the wrath of the hookers stare when he steps out of line during training.

"He seems like a quiet guy, but nah, he has his own way of just having a kind of stare that puts you back in line, but it's nothing more than that," said the 28-year-old.

"It will be awesome to play alongside Kevvy for his last game, hopefully he'll play some club games later on with me [for Otahuhu], but he's had an awesome career and he's had a big part in my career especially with Auckland and the Blues and one last one will be awesome."

Meanwhile, the man himself is helping the All Black squad’s youngsters deal with the pressure that come with playing in a World Cup final. Unsurprisingly, New Zealand are firm favourites in the betting odds to walk away with the trophy.

"The more you accept it [the pressure] and understand it the better you cope with it," said Mealammu, who will run on in his 376th professional rugby match appearance at Twickenham on Saturday.

“When you are younger you are trying to find a strategy to deal with it. We are lucky we've been in that situation before.

"There are some things transferrable this year, putting the opposition aside, playing in a final and knowing how people are feeling, but it's a new challenge in a new place, a different opposition, different ground.

"All these things play a part. There are learning's from last time, but it's a new situation."

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