A LATCHFORD Giants junior rugby league player, who is on Warrington Wolves' books, has been named in the Wales under 16s first-team squad to face England on August 31.

Luke Thomas is in the 20-man cut named by head coach Lee Crooks, with the remaining 15 players from the train-on sessions making up a development squad.

Crooks said: “Having come into the role of Wales U16 head coach, there has been some obstacles which we have had to overcome. The selection process has been quite difficult but I believe that we have a group of players that have the potential to get better and for some of them progress into the professional game.

“We selected an initial 17 players from the North v South game and then added 18 players from the East v West game. This gave me a chance to look at all players facing up against others of similar ability.

“The focus of the three camps from a coach’s point is to develop the players’ technical and tactical understanding of the game. The focus for the players will be to learn how to compete at the highest levels and understand their individual roles and responsibilities.

“The game against England will be very difficult but our success will not be based on what the scoreboard says, but on how well we compete. I hope that this group of players along with the U14 Development Squad will continue to look to develop themselves through our elite player programmes which will be announced later.”