Wales Dragonhearts – made up of players from their domestic competition – and Germany have named their squads for the international this Saturday at Glamorgan Wanderers, Cardiff (kick-off 3pm). The sides met in Germany last year, with the Welsh getting home 40-32 in a superb contest.
Valley Cougars provide most representatives with nine in total, in a Dragonhearts’ squad drawn from six clubs.
“It has been a very difficult selection process with everyone putting their hand up,” said head coach, Andrew Thorne. “It has been going on since the end of July when a Probables side beat a British Army side at Stebonheath Park in Llanelli. Following that, the North Wales Origin side narrowly beat a South Wales Possibles line up at Queensway Stadium in Wrexham and we finished up with a win over Devon.
“We had a final session last weekend at Parc Y Scarlets and the effort from all the boys was outstanding.”
In a boost for Germany, Jimmy Keinhorst is available to play after being part of the Leeds Rhinos’ Super League Grand Final winning squad, last weekend. He returns after a four year absence from the national team.
“It will be a great opportunity for our domestic players to be able to train and play with someone of Jimmy’s calibre,” said German coach, Simon Cooper. “We are very much in the middle of a rebuilding phase and the emphasis for us is on development and improved performance.”
New to the German squad, two heritage players – Brad Billsborough of St.Helens and Dan Pearson from Sherwood Wolf Hunt – will both be looking to make their international debut.
Dragonhearts squad: Andrew Oakden, (Chester Gladiators), Ben Stelmaszek (Flintshire Falcons), Mark Jones (Rhondda Outlaws), Sam Baker, Matt Cummins, Kurtis Haille, Jarrad Hinnem, Louis Pengelly (Torfaen Tigers), Scott Britton, Ethan Coombes, Scott Giles, Lee Goddard, Dafydd Hellard, Dean Higgs, Mike Hurley, Shane Lee, Liam Watton (Valley Cougars), Mathew Davies, Ben Swift (West Wales Raiders).
Germany squad: Presley Chirombe, Benedikt Esser, David Ziekursch, Marc Zupan (Grüne Jäger), Jimmy Keinhorst (Leeds Rhinos), Nick Keinhorst (Leeds Akkies), Jannek Hagenah, Renko Flemming (Northern Devils), Philip Hunz, Sebo Roczyn (Ostwestfalen), Andy Hoggins (Oxford), Mawuli Amefia, Liam Doughton, Joshua Leutenecker, Basti Peters, Vivian Seelweger (Ruhrpott Rhinos), Brad Billsborough (St. Helens), Dan Pearson (Sherwood Wolf Hunt), Ben White (Swinton Lions), Ben Dent (York City Knights). On stand-by: Auf Abruf, Zak Bredin, Matej Bestic.