Text us your news! Start your message Warrington News and send any photos or videos to 80360
Warrington Wolves' centre Ryan Atkins hopes to secure an England shirt for game two of the International Origin series
RYAN Atkins is hoping his performance during England's victory over the Exiles was enough to secure his shirt for future internationals.
Making his return to the England side for the first time since 2010, Warrington's devastating try scorer spoke of his pride after helping Steve McNamara's side avenge last year's International Origin defeat by taking the series opener 18-10 at Langtree Park.
Now the 26-year-old hopes his limited time on the ball did enough to persuade the England boss to keep the faith for the second fixture in Huddersfield on July 4.
"It was good to pull the shirt on again, the hairs were standing up on the back of my neck for the national anthem," he said.
"When I was in the changing rooms I knew this is where I want to be, both for the next Origin match and for internationals down the line, including the World Cup.
"Hopefully I have done enough to stake my claim for the next game.
"There were four players who missed out and then there are other players in the Elite Training Squad (ETS) who will want to put themselves forward for the next game, but hopefully I'll keep hold of it."
Atkins played no part in England's Four Nations campaign last year after ruling himself out, a decision that McNamara took a dim view of when leaving him out of England's ETS earlier this season.
But the centre's superb club form, which has seen him score 17 tries in all competitions, ensured the England coach had no choice but to include him in the England camp this week.
"It was great to be back," he said.
"I have loved every minute of this week, it has been awesome, being back in the England squad and to get the win as well.
"It has been great to be around super professionals like Jamie Peacock, Kevin Sinfield and Sam Tomkins, it has been brilliant.
"You are watching the best of the best train, see their routines prior to games and get the chance to play alongside them, it is awesome."
Atkins' position on the left wing put him face to face with Warrington Wolves teammates Joel Monaghan and Trent Waterhouse, a tussle that saw the trio clash on several occasions throughout the contest.
The former Wakefield Trinity Wildcats centre relished the chance to take on his teammates, and was proud to see so many Wolves faces representing the club in both the internationals on Saturday, with Stefan Ratchford, Chris Riley, Mike Cooper, Tyrone McCarthy, James Mendeika and Danny Bridge all playing in the curtain raiser between England Knights and Ireland.
"I had a few tussles with Joel, but you forget your club while you are playing for England," he said.
"You are an England player first and this week Joel was my opposition.
"I wanted to smash him if he ran at me, and I'm sure he wanted to do the same.
"It was a good weekend for the club all in all.
"We had quite a few representing Warrington tonight, in the England v Exiles and the Knights v Ireland as well, and we all did ourselves and the club proud with our performances."