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Warrington Wolves' Ryan Atkins and Garreth Carvell named in England squad to face Exiles
11:02am Thursday 7th June 2012 in Wolves news
ENGLAND coach Steve McNamara has included Warrington Wolves centre Ryan Atkins in his squad for the forthcoming International Origin opener against the Exiles at Langtree Park, St Helens on Saturday June 16 (6.45pm.
Atkins, who has not played for England since October 2010 in a defeat to Australia in Melbourne, returns to the squad after impressing McNamara in recent weeks with some strong performances in the Stobart Super League.
He is joined in the squad by the other non Elite Training Squad member, Danny Tickle of Hull, whose last international cap came in 2009 in victory over Wales at Brewery Field, Bridgend.
“I have been impressed with Ryan (Atkins) and Danny’s (Tickle) form in recent weeks,” said McNamara.
“They have worked hard to force their way into the squad and now have an opportunity of being part of the Elite Training Squad for the rest of this year and beyond.
“It was a difficult process to select the squad that will face the Exiles. There are considerably more than 21 players in the Stobart Super League that could quite easily have been part of our plans and that is testament to the quality we have in the competition.”
The 21-man squad includes 10 players who were involved in the 2011 Gillette Four Nations and four players who are uncapped by England, including Leeds Rhinos utility player Carl Ablett and Wigan Warriors in-form speedster Josh Charnley.
From the original ETS squad selected in March, 12 players have not been selected including Warrington prop Adrian Morley, Leeds’ Ryan Bailey and Catalan Dragons hooker Ian Henderson. ETS members Zak Hardaker (Leeds Rhinos), Ben Jones-Bishop (Leeds Rhinos) and Jonny Lomax (St Helens) have been selected in the England Knights squad that will play Ireland preceding the International Origin match at Langtree Park.
“We have a number of players who are injured (Danny McGuire, Kallum Watkins, Ben Westwood and Kirk Yeaman) that haven’t been considered for selection this time,” added McNamara.
“For the other players that have missed out, the door is still open and it is important that they continue to work hard in the domestic competition with a view to getting back in the squad.
“It is a pleasing situation to be in. We have competition for places right across the team and every player knows that they have to perform week in, week out if they are going to be part of the England programme.
“Every match counts as we continue the build-up to next year’s Rugby League World Cup and with the increasing number of high quality players emerging across Super League, and not forgetting our Australian based players in the NRL, we have a bright future at international level.”
The squad will meet up at their Loughborough base on Monday and McNamara will announce his team to face the Exiles next Thursday.
Full details of the England and England Knights squads are below: England squad to face the Exiles at Langtree Park, Saturday June 16, kick off 6.45pm, in full is: Carl Ablett (Leeds Rhinos), Ryan Atkins (Warrington Wolves), Tom Briscoe (Hull FC), Danny Brough (Huddersfield Giants), Rob Burrow (Leeds Rhinos), Garreth Carvell (Warrington Wolves), Josh Charnley (Wigan Warriors), Rangi Chase (Castleford Tigers), Eorl Crabtree (Huddersfield Giants), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield Giants), Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos), Gareth Hock (Wigan Warriors), Jamie Jones-Buchanan (Leeds Rhinos), Lee Mossop (Wigan Warriors), Sean O’Loughlin (Wigan Warriors), Jamie Peacock (captain) (Leeds Rhinos), James Roby (St Helens), Kevin Sinfield (Leeds Rhinos), Danny Tickle (Hull FC), Sam Tomkins (Wigan Warriors), Jon Wilkin (St Helens).
Tickets for the opening International Origin Game of 2012 at Langtree Park, St Helens, on Saturday June 16 (6.45pm) cost from £18 (£9 concessions) for standing and £21 (£10 concessions) seating and are available at www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or by contacting the RFL Ticket Office on 0844 856 1113.