Kiwis v Tonga: Recalled half Benji Marshall eager to restore Kiwis aura

After seven years of international league exile, Benji Marshall's poised to play again for the Kiwis.

Marshall was included in coach Michael Maguire's 19-man squad to face Tonga this Saturday and his first port of call is restoring the aura back into the black jersey.

"Realistically, I never thought it was going to happen again," Marshall told Newshub.

But his form this season for the Tigers has been too good to ignore. Marshall's selection raises the prospect of a mouth-watering halves pairing with Shaun Johnson.

Johnson made his debut alongside Marshall in 2012.

"Last time I was in this environment, I was a kid and he was the king," Johnson recalled.

But how things have changed.

"He wouldn't let me choose the bed," Marshall replied. "Because he said he's the incumbent, so I had to have the single bed and he's got the double bed.

Marshall will need a good night's sleep this week. Waiting on Saturday is a Tongan side buoyed by a win last time these two sides met.

"I think this jumper might have lost its aura a bit to the fans and I think it's our job to regain that."

That starts this Saturday, as Marshall gets back to work with the Kiwis.

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