Hull KR hooker Josh Hodgson is targeting a place in England’s Four Nations squad, but understands it will be difficult given the number of high quality players vying for the number nine shirt.
The 24-year-old has comfortably been the Robins’ best player in 2014, with seven tries, eight assists, 562 tackles, 246 carries and nearly 1,700 metres. He was included in Steve McNamara’s 34-man train-on squad and is hoping to make the cut when the England boss culls the squad to 24 for October’s Four Nations.
“It’s a huge honour for me to be here. You look around and there is some great talent here,” he told the Hull Daily Mail.
“To play for my country would be my proudest moment and that’s the goal. I’ve made the 34-man squad, but once you do that you change your target.
“It’s a very proud moment for me to have been called up, but I’m not one to just settle for that. If you’ve got any ambition about you, then you want to play for your country and making the final 24-man squad has to be my next target.
“If I can do that, I’ll want to be in the 17. It’s a good mentality to have to want to keep improving. This is my first call-up to the ETS squad and I’m proud to be here, but I want to keep progressing.”
He know he will have to outperform some of Super League’s biggest names to do that, though.
“We’ve [James] Roby, [Michael] McIlorum and [Daryl] Clark, and others not involved like [Danny] Houghton and [Shaun] Lunt,” he said.
“It’s going to be tough to get in the squad. I know I’ll have to be at my best because it’s one of the strongest positions we have as a country, but that’s great for Steve and for the national team.”