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Daly Cherry-Evans believes a bruising encounter against a PNG Prime Minister's XIII was just the ticket for the Australian players who will back up for the Gallagher Kangaroos in next month's Pacific Championships. 

Coach Mal Meninga was able to field several incumbent and potential future Kangaroos in the tough 30-18 win in Port Moresby, providing those who weren't a part of the latter stages of the Telstra Premiership finals with some valuable playing time. 

Australia open their Pacific Championships campaign against Samoa on October 14 in Townsville, in what will be a rematch of last year's World Cup Final at Old Trafford, which Meninga's men won 30-10.

“For anyone who's lucky enough to get picked for the Test matches next month, this was the perfect lead-up when it comes to getting your lungs ready, but also physically getting your body ready, because the Kumuls challenge you physically," Cherry-Evans said. 

“They just played really well and I think we just got the preparation we needed.

“It was a very stop-start game and you could rotate your interchanges as frequently as you wanted, so there [wasn't] many places to hide."

Meninga: 'Rugby League is the winner'

One important lesson was around how Australia need to prepare for noisy environments, with Cherry-Evans admitting post-match that it meant communication wasn't as good as it needed to be at times. 

That could be key for upcoming games, particularly in the event they end up facing the Kiwis or Samoa in the final in New Zealand, where the Warriors have been attracting vocal sell-out crowds for the second half of the season.

“I don't think we prepared well enough for the noise. We trained great all week and we connected really well as a group, but we may as well have cut our ears off," Cherry-Evans said.

Hudson Young Try

"It did hurt us a little bit because it didn't allow us to flow."

Meanwhile the 34-year-old said he enjoyed every moment of his second trip to PNG with the PM's XIII.

“We've been treated with so much respect and kindness from everyone and PNG and it's just made another memorable experience,” Cherry-Evans said.

“I've been lucky enough to come here once before, but it was a little while ago and this is just reminding me why it's such a beautiful place and why rugby league's the number one sport.

“I definitely felt the love over here. I mean, I wouldn't say I was one of the big dogs like Tino and Hammer (Tabuai-Fidow) and the Foxx (Addo-Carr), but I certainly walked away feeling really grateful for my role in the NRL and how far our support travels."

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