THE prospect of playing the full 80 minutes of Saturday's World Cup Final against Australia is not something that that fazes non-stop hooker James Roby.

Although the Saints number nine has only started one of the tournament's games so far, Josh Hodgson's anterior cruciate ligament injury leaves Roby as the only recognised number nine in the 24-man squad.

But tackling the world's best is meat and drink to the former Blackbrook junior who has regularly played the whole game at Saints since taking over from Keiron Cunningham as the club's senior hooker.

But by his own admission, this is taking it up a notch.

Roby, who won his 30th cap after replacing Hodgson in the first half of the thrilling win over Tonga in Auckland, said: "I'm just happy to do whatever I'm asked to do.

"It's gutting for Josh but, if it means me starting, it will be an opportunity I'll have to take.

"I'm far more used to starting than coming off the bench to be honest. I'm going to have to get ready to get going from the off."

Although Bennett has the option of using George Williams, Stefan Ratchford or Jonny Lomax as back-up nines Roby says he is prepared to play the full match if necessary.

He said: "I'm used to playing 80 minutes but these World Cup games are that intense.

"Because of the quality of players on show, everything is that little bit faster and that little bit more physical.

"It obviously does take its toll. But if I have to do 80 I'll put my hand up and do my best."

On form, there was argument that the 32-year-old Saint should have been given the starting nod for the hooking berth anyway.

And his zip, superior decision making from dummy half and workrate will be invaluable.

The final, England's first since 1995, is a massive game for Roby, and Saints teammate Alex Walmsley.

But Roby, who was in the last Great Britain side to beat Australia, back in 2006 in Sydney, is not over-awed.

He is relishing the opportunity to face up to Green and Golds skipper Cameron Smith in Saturday's showdown at the Brisbane Suncorp.

"Obviously Cameron Smith is a great player, someone I respect a great deal," Roby said.

"He's been Australia's stand-out player for many years. You know what to expect from him because he turns up and does it week-on-week.

"Australia will be the favourites and deservedly so.

"They played well against Fiji on Friday night.

"We know it's a tough task and that we're going to have to be at our best if we're going to get anywhere near that World Cup. That's the challenge in front of us and it's one we're looking forward to."