Baggies ace eyes WC spot

West Brom striker looks to down Bahrain

Wood: Hoping for start

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Chris Wood is hoping his impressive performance against Bahrain last month will earn him a start for New Zealand this Saturday.

In the first leg of the Asia/Oceania World Cup play-off, the West Bromwich Albion striker proved a handful for the Bahraini defence after coming on as a substitute in the 66th minute.

He also had a late effort ruled offside in the goalless draw at Bahrain National Stadium.

Now the 17 year-old believes he is ready to dislodge Celtic's Chris Killen in the starting eleven for the return leg in Wellington.

"I had a good performance over there," Wood said on The New Zealand Herald.

"I hope that gives (coach) Ricki Herbert something to think about. I have been playing well for (West Brom too).

"I don't feel like I'm 17. More like 25, for what I have achieved in my short career. If you have the ability, I have no doubt you should be out there."

New Zealand coach Herbert is expected to name his side for the crucial match on Saturday morning.