Castleford Tigers centre Michael Shenton has expressed his delight at being named in Steve McNamara’s England train-on squad and says it has always been a goal to get another chance at international level.
The 27-year-old is one of three Tigers players to have made McNamara’s side and is tipped by many to start alongside Kallum Watkins in this autumn’s Four Nations. Jack Reed (Brisbane Broncos), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield Giants), Chris Bridge (Warrington Wolves) and Dan Sarginson (Wigan Warriors) will all have something to say about that, though.
“I always thought I was young enough to get back in,” Shenton told Sky Sports.
“Coming back here was a reason for that; to become an important player in a team again. When Ian Millward brought me back, that was one of the goals I set myself.
“If I never got back in then nobody could take away the fact I played for England. The recognition is nice and it’s great for Castleford to have three players in the squad. It’s recognition of where we’re at as a club and how well we’re playing.”
On the prospect of appearing in October’s Four Nations in Australia, the former St Helens centre added: “Going on tour is massive. It’s a special occasion that doesn’t happen many times in a player’s career. However there’s quite a way to go in the season yet and form can dip and rise, so I’ve got to keep on top of my game.
“You’re up against a lot of competition in the centres and that’s motivation in itself to play well and improve. I’m happy with the recall obviously It doesn’t mean too much at the minute but going forward it means I’m in Steve Mac’s eyes, which is pleasing and a bit more motivation to finish the season as I started it.”