ENGLAND coach Shaun Wane has named a 35-strong squad ahead of a key get together next week.
The former Wigan boss, yet to take charge of the national side in a match because of the pandemic, will lead a training session at Leeds Beckett University next Tuesday, April 13.
It will be Wane’s first physical session with his players since his appointment more than twelve months ago, as preparation build towards the mid-season international against the Combined Nations All Stars at Warrington on Friday, June 25.
England kick-off the World Cup against Samoa at St James’ Park, Newcastle, on Saturday, October 23.
Seven NRL-based players are included in the squad and, although they will not be at the Leeds Beckett session, they will have regular contact with the England coaching team.
One player who will be there is Salford’s Kallum Watkins, who earned the last of his 25 international caps in the 2017 World Cup final against Australia when he famously came within a Josh Dugan ankle tap of taking the game down to the wire.
St Helens skipper James Roby is the most experienced player in the squad.
The youngest is 21-year-old Harry Newman.
The Leeds centre is currently fighting his way back to fitness following a broken leg in 2020, but Wane insists that at this stage injury is no barrier to being involved with the squad.
“I rate Harry Newman very highly. He’s a good chance of playing in the World Cup,” explained Wane.
“Names will come and go as the season unfolds, but the 35 players I’ve named reflect my current thinking.”
John Bateman (Wigan), Tom Burgess (South Sydney), Daryl Clark, Mike Cooper, Ben Currie (all Warrington), Niall Evalds (Castleford), Herbie Farnworth (Brisbane), Liam Farrell (Wigan), Luke Gale (Leeds), Oliver Gildart (Wigan), Josh Griffin (Hull, Ash Handley (Leeds), Zak Hardaker (Wigan), Josh Hodgson (Canberra), Tom Johnstone (Wakefield), Toby King (Warrington), Morgan Knowles, Jonny Lomax (both St Helens), Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield), Paul McShane (Castleford), Tommy Makinson (St Helens), Dom Manfredi (Wigan), Harry Newman (Leeds), Mark Percival (St Helens), Joe Philbin, Stefan Ratchford (both Warrington), James Roby (St Helens), Dan Sarginson (Salford), Ryan Sutton (Canberra), Luke Thompson (Canterbury), Sam Tomkins (Catalans), Alex Walmsley (St Helens), Kallum Watkins (Salford), Elliott Whitehead, George Williams (both Canberra).