Brown itching for action

Midfielder Tim Brown is itching to get back on the field as the Wellington Phoenix step up their Hyundai A-League pre-season preparations.

Midfielder Tim Brown is itching to get back on the field as the Wellington Phoenix step up their Hyundai A-League pre-season preparations.

Brown's recovery from a broken shoulder he suffered in an All Whites friendly against Australia became the hot topic of conversation last month as the 29-year-old battled back from surgery to take his place in the All Whites World Cup squad.

But the hard-working midfielder did not feature in any of the team's group matches in South Africa and is desperate to be playing again.

"It was an incredible experience [in South Africa] and I wouldn't have missed it for the world. It was bitterly disappointing that I didn't play but that is something I will get over in time. I'm glad I made it," Brown said.

"[The shoulder] has been good the last couple of weeks really. It's not quite a hundred percent but as far as I know I'm ready to go."

"I've still got to meet with the medical staff here and go over things but I'm feeling excited just to play."

"I've had a bit of a tough time out with a pretty unfortunate injury and I'd just like to get back on the field and get busy with things really."

Whether Brown gets his wish and plays in the pre-season match against Brisbane Roar in Hamilton on Saturday remains to be seen.

But the big talking point is the looming fixture against South American super club Boca Juniors in Wellington on July 23.

"It will be a great occasion for the club and it's just another highlight in a long list of highlights that I've had in the last few years," said Brown, who played against David Beckham's LA Galaxy in Wellington in 2007 and was instrumental in helping his side finish third in the Hyundai A-League last season and getting the All Whites to the World Cup.

Fellow midfielder Leo Bertos, another All White who has returned to club duties in Wellington along with Tony Lochhead, Ben Sigmund, Mark Paston and coach Ricki Herbert, was equally excited about the prospect of taking on the illustrious Buenos Aires side.

"It's a massive club, amazing players and it gives new Zealand football fans a chance to see some of the best players in the world. These are the types of games we've got to keep getting here," Bertos added.

The Phoenix has sent an invitation to colourful Argentina coach Diego Maradona to attend the exhibition match involving his former side.

The former striker, regarded by many as the second greatest footballer of all time behind Brazilian Pele, played 70 games for Boca Juniors, scoring 35 goals, in two stints between 1981 and 1997.