SAINTS hooker James Roby was singled out for praise by head coach Wayne Bennett after helping England to a 36-6 victory over France — but will that be enough to displace Josh Hodgson from the number nine shirt for the knockout stages?

Canberra's Hodgson started the tournament as first choice hooker, but Roby's form in the World Cup has been as impressive as it has been all year for Saints to make him favourite to take on the job.

The veteran's running threat from dummy half and crisp pass selection have been strong features when he has played.

Roby said: "Wayne will speak to us during the week and tell us what his team selection is.

"There's good rivalry in this squad in pretty much every position. They're all quality players.

"Obviously me and Josh are rotating in training but that's the same for the other players. We're all competitive by nature and it probably brings out the best in us without us even realising it sometimes."

England take on Papua New Guinea in Sunday's quarter-final in Melbourne and it won't be a cakewalk.

After losing 18-4 in the opener against Australia, England have beaten both Lebanon and France without looking convincing.

"We're aware of that," Roby said.

"We need to rectify it. We had a really good start against France and put points on the board but in the second half our completion was way down.

"I'm sure we'll be touching on that this week. There were periods in the game when we got a bit lost and we need to get that out of our game and put an 80-minute performance together."

Roby will be up against two world-class hookers in former Leeds pair James Segeyaro and Paul Aiton.

"They're well-known names," Roby said.

"We know what they're capable of. They're fantastic players.

"I've played against PNG a couple of times, they're a very physical team."