International call-ups leave Wakefield depleted for Wigan Warriors clash

WAKEFIELD TRINITY head coach Chris Chester admits that Friday’s match between England and the Combined Nations All Stars has been a “big disruption” as they prepare for tonight’s Super League meeting with Wigan Warriors.

Thursday, 24th June 2021, 10:21 am
Wakefield head coach Chris Chester. Picture by Alex Whitehead/

Trinity have lost four players - Reece Lyne, Joe Westerman, Kelepi Tanginoa and Liam Kay - to the international, with Lyne and Westerman set to represent England while Tanginoa and Kay have been named in the All Stars side.

Wakefield have just 17 fit players to take on Wigan but Chester knows the challenges posed this week are not unique to his side.

“The way that everything has been organised, the not knowing who is in and out of the squad, has been difficult,” said Chester of the international fixture.

“Not so much the England team but more so the All Stars. I know a lot of clubs are in the same boat but we have lost Reece Lyne, Joe Westerman, Kelepi Tanginoa and Liam Kay.

“We have got 17 players for this week. It has been really difficult to plan anything this week. To lose those players to the international game has had a big disruption. A lot of teams are going through it.”

He added: “We have just got to get on with it and get a team out there that is more than capable of getting a result against a young, hungry Wigan side.”

Chester feels the international game - which will be Wane’s first since taking charge of England - should have been played without any Super League games taking place in the same week.

Given the packed fixture schedule, the Trinity chief suggested that the players involved in the contest should have been evenly spread across the top-flight clubs.

“There was probably an easier solution, where every team in Super League loses two or three players each to make it more of a fair round,” he added.

“There are some clubs losing five players or four players like ourselves.

“We want a strong England team and for Shaun Wane to do really well for England. Reading between the lines, he is just not getting the support that is needed.

"We have worked hard this week and we look forward to seeing what this young team can put on. We have got nine homegrown players playing for us this week which is fantastic for the club.”