Six former Wildcats included in new-look England set-up

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SIX former Wakefield Wildcats players have received international recognition following the announcement of England’s Elite Training and Knights squads today.

England coach Steve McNamara has named Dale Ferguson, who made the switch from Wakefield to Huddersfield Giants just a fortnight ago, alongside another former Wildcat in Ryan Atkins in the newly-formed Knights squad, put in place to supplement the Elite Training squad.

Danny Brough, who captained Scotland in the 2008 World Cup while at Belle Vue, joins former Wakefield players Ben Westwood, now at Warrington Wolves, Peter Fox, now at Hull KR and Brett Ferres, now at Castleford Tigers, in the 32-man Elite squad.

The squads will form the nucleus of the national side between now and the World Cup in 2013.

“These are two very exciting squads whose participation in the programmes we are putting together will help us realise our ambition to win the Rugby League World Cup in 2013,” said McNamara.

“There is a terrific blend of youth and experience in the ETS and I’m sure all the players involved, especially the younger element, will benefit from working alongside each other over the months and years to come.

“Both programmes are designed to create enhanced player development and while some players will not be involved in the World Cup come 2013, there are players in both squads who we fully expect will feature in that tournament and the World Cup in 2017.”

England Elite Training Squad: Chris Bridge, Ben Harrison, Adrian Morley, Richard Myler, Ben Westwood (all Warrington); Tom Briscoe (Hull FC); Peter Fox, Liam Watts, Kris Welham (all Hull KR); Rob Burrow, Ryan Hall, Ben Jones-Bishop, Danny McGuire, Jamie Peacock, Kevin Sinfield (all Leeds Rhinos); Danny Brough, Eorl Crabtree, Leroy Cudjoe, Luke Robinson (all Huddersfield Giants); Michael McIlorum, Paul Prescott, Sam Tomkins, Joel Tomkins, Sean O’Loughlin (all Wigan Warriors); James Graham, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Leon Pryce, James Roby, Michael Shenton, Jon Wilkin (all St Helens); Tony Clubb (Harlequins); Brett Ferres (Castleford Tigers).

England Knights: Joe Arundel, John Walker (both Castleford Tigers); Ryan Atkins, Chris Riley (both Warrington Wolves); Jodie Broughton, Stefan Ratchford, Matty Smith (all Salford City Reds); Josh Charnley, Liam Farrell, Darrell Goulding, Stefan Marsh, Lee Mossop (all Wigan Warriors); Paul Clough, Jonathan Lomax, Scott Moore (all St Helens); James Donaldson, Elliott Whitehead (both Bradford Bulls); Dale Ferguson, Michael Lawrence, Jermaine McGilvray, Larne Patrick, Shaun Lunt (all Huddersfield Giants); Luke Gale (Harlequins), Kallum Watkins (Leeds); Joe Westerman (Hull FC).

See Friday’s Wakefield Express Sport for all the latest sports news from around the district.