England Women’s team to feature in historic double-header

ENGLAND’S men’s, women’s and wheelchair teams will step up preparations for this Autumn’s World Cup in a triple bill in June.

There will be an historic double-header featuring the men’s and women’s teams at Warrington’s Halliwell Jones Stadium on Friday, June 25.

The men will face the Combined Nations All Stars (8.15pm) in Shaun Wane’s first match at the helm after the women take on Wales (6pm).

And the day after, Saturday, June 26, the wheelchair team will play Wales at Sheffield’s English Institute of Sport (kickoff to be confirmed).

The BBC will broadcast the match on their digital platforms in another significant first for the game.

The Friday fixtures will be screened live by Sky while an initial allocation of 4,000 tickets are now on sale for the double-header, with the hope that more will become available as social-distancing requirements ease.

The England wheelchair match has an initially limited allocation with more seats expected to be released nearer the day.

Tickets for both events are available at eticketing.co.uk/rugbyleague.

RFL chief executive Ralph Rimmer said: “In such a significant year for Rugby League as we prepare to host three World Cups in England, this is an announcement for the whole game to celebrate.

“To have the three England teams who will play in those World Cups in action over the space of 24 hours in June, and for the England women and wheelchair teams to receive unprecedented levels of broadcast exposure through Sky and the BBC, really sets the tone for what we want to achieve this year.

“It’s the best chance yet for Rugby League supporters to get behind those teams, as I know they will do in the World Cup.

“For Shaun Wane, who has had to wait so long for his first match as England coach, the priority for the mid-season international has always been the quality of opposition.

“After the postponement of the Ashes Series in 2020, this will be Shaun’s only chance to put an England team on the field until the Autumn.

“That’s why we have looked to the traditions of the Other Nationalities team, so that England will be facing the cream of the players from every other nation represented in the Betfred Super League.

“We believe those players will relish the opportunity of playing representative rugby in this unique context, looking back to the great names who represented Other Nationalities in the past.

“And we hope the All Stars concept will help create real longevity for this fixture.”

Final interviews for the head coach and selector position for the Combined Nations All Stars have been conducted.

Experienced former NRL, Hull KR and Widnes coach Tim Sheens is reportedly among the candidates.