Wigan and England forward John Bateman admits he’s “thrilled” to be back in the international picture for this year’s Four Nations tournament.
Bateman played a pivotal role in England’s Test series victory against New Zealand last year, and will again be involved for the national side in 2016 after being selected in Wayne Bennett’s 24-man squad.
He believes England have a great chance of success in the tournament, but concedes will be a tougher ask this time around.
“I’m thrilled to be involved again,” he told the club’s official website.
“Last year was a great experience and we did well against a good Kiwis side. This year it will be tougher with Australia and Scotland thrown into the mix too but we’ve got a good young team. On our day I think we definitely mix it with the best of them.”
Bateman also admitted that, after winning his first Grand Final last Saturday, he was still struggling to get his head around the enormity of the success.
“I’m still in a state of shock really. It’s my third year at the club and my third Grand Final and having lost the last two I was just desperate to win this one.
“We were always confident we could do it. We’ve had a number of players missing throughout the year but have continually found a way to get results.
“We finished second in the table and that secured the home semi-final, we’ll always back ourselves against anyone at home and got the job done against Hull. From there, the Grand Final is a one-off game and anything can happen. We knew Warrington would be tough opponents and they gave it everything but thankfully we had just enough to get the win.”