Kiwis urged to unleash JWH on Australia

Jared Waerea-Hargreaves' New Zealand teammates says it is a no-brainer for coach Michael Maguire to recall the firebrand prop for their crunch World Cup semi-final with Australia.

Waerea-Hargreaves has played just one game since the Sydney Roosters' season-ending loss to South Sydney in September, after which he was given a three-match ban for a head slam on Tom Burgess.

The veteran prop featured in the Kiwis' final World Cup group game against Ireland but missed their quarter-final victory over Fiji after picking up a ban for a high shot in the game against the Irish.

The 33-year-old is free to play this week and while he has been struggling with a hamstring injury, the Kiwis clearly lacked his intensity in a scrappy win over the Fijians.

"He's huge, and what he brings to camp you can't make up for it," fellow forward Joe Tapine said.

"He's a seasoned veteran and goes after people.

"He's not afraid, he knows how he plays and I like playing with people like that."

The difficulty for Warea-Hargreaves as he tries to force his way back into the side for Friday's (Saturday AEDT) clash at Elland Road in Leeds, is that the squad is blessed with strong forward depth.

"This is my fifth tour and on paper this is the best forward pack," winger Jordan Rapana said ahead of a game in which the Kiwis hope to inflict only their second defeat of Australia since 2015.

"(Waerea-Hargreaves) is an enforcer and gets our go-forward going.

"He never takes a step backwards and we've got a great forward pack and when we get that go-forward we are hard to handle."