I would play Whitehead, says John Kear

Former England coach John Kear believes England should play Elliott Whitehead in their Four Nations showdown with New Zealand this Saturday – with Joel Tomkins being one the one to miss out in Kear’s mind.

There have been growing calls for Whitehead to be involved in Steve McNamara’s side after an incredible first full season at Catalan Dragons, which saw him gain inclusion into the Super League Dream Team.

Similarly, Tomkins has struggled to replicate the form he showed before his switch to rugby union, and Kear believes the Dragons’ back-rower should be in – as well as thinking Daryl Clark should be used much more by the England boss.

“The changes he (Steve McNamara) made for the last game improved the team,” he told the Yorkshire Post. “I am a great admirer of Michael Shenton, but including Dan Sarginson improved the team so well done to Steve for that.

“Sean O’Loughlin has to play, so him coming in for Joe Westerman was par for the course, but I would have gone with Elliott Whitehead this week and left Joel Tomkins out. I would also use Daryl Clark far more extensively.”