Wedding and best man plans for England RL’s Reece Lyne
PREPARATION is key to performance but not everything goes to plan as Wakefield Trinity’s Reece Lyne has discovered.
The strong-running centre rounded off his 2021 season by winning his second international cap in England’s 30-10 win against France on Saturday.
After a long campaign which saw Trinity battling against plenty of adversity, that then started a well-earned holiday until the end of November – and another important match-up off the field.
“I’ve been up to Lake Windermere with my partner and just proposed to her yesterday,” Lyne told The Yorkshire Post.
“She said ‘yes’ but it didn’t all go according to plan as we didn’t have the weather. I planned to take a boat out on Windermere and ask her on there. But then I got a call the day before saying it was too windy and there’s weather warnings so we had to cancel!
“I had to do a Plan B and did it in the room instead but it was still a nice day.”
Wedding plans will now be on the agenda but Lyne also aims to do enough in the next 12 months to persuade England coach Shaun Wane he is worthy of a place in his squad for next autumn’s World Cup.
Delayed for a year following Australia and New Zealand’s decision to pull out due to Covid concerns, the Yorkshireman is holding the shirt after playing in both games this year.
However, a raft of centres were unavailable at the weekend, including St Helens’ Mark Percival, Wigan’s Oliver Gildart, Warrington Wolves’ Toby King, Salford Red Devils’ Kallum Watkins and Hull FC’s Josh Griffin.
Leeds Rhinos’ Harry Newman is well thought of and competition in 2022 will be fierce.
“It is a tough one,” conceded Lyne, who partnered Zak Hardaker against the French.
“Being in Shaun’s company and seeing how he operates a couple of times, hopefully he can now see what I can do.
“But there are lots of good centres in the competition so I’m not taking anything for granted.
“The tournament’s a year out. That’s a long time and a lot can happen between now and then.
“So, I’m just going to focus on having my best year and getting myself in good shape as you can’t rest on your laurels. Everyone will be fighting for that same spot.”
Lyne was the only surviour from the England side that last played France in 2018, when he made his debut alongside Trinity team-mate Tom Johnstone, the winger who memorably scored a hat-trick on his own bow.
The former Hull centre did feature in June’s defeat against the Combined Nations All Stars – Wane’s first game in charge –and impressed the coach on that night. Lyne, 28, recalled: “It was good to get out in the middle of the year against the All Stars.
“But that didn’t count as an actual Test match so it was good to get another cap and get back playing. It’d been five weeks or so since my last game so you tend to be a bit rusty but it was good to get in camp with the lads and finish off with a good win.”
Lyne showed some quality touches against France, particularly as the visitors raced into a 20-0 lead inside just 18 minutes.
However, as Laurent Frayssinous’s side recovered, he did waste a chance in the second half when breaking clear. Hull-born Lyne was also worried after committing a tip tackle towards the end of the first half.
“I didn’t think it was that bad,” he said, about the challenge which only resulted in a penalty.
“But then I watched it on the replays and I was thinking potentially it could be a sin-binning.
“It was a mixed game for me. There were some nice bits in there and plenty of stuff still to work on. Overall, it was good to get the result.”
Long-serving Lyne is already itching to get going again with Trinity in 2022.
He chalked up his 200th appearance for the club earlier this year and recently signed a new deal which keeps him at Belle Vue until the end of 2025.
Although coach Chris Chester was sacked in August after a troubled spell, assistant Willie Poching stepped up and helped deliver five wins from seven games.
That saw him gain the job on a permanent basis and Lyne – who joined from Hull in 2012 – is encouraged for next season.
The West Yorkshire club has made four new signings, including Huddersfield Giants stand-off Lee Gaskell and Warrington winger Tom Lineham.
Lyne said: “I am really looking forward to it. The ending of the season came with a few wins and that built confidence. Hopefully we can build on that.
“There’s a few new signings who have come in that are proven at Super League level so they should boost us. Hopefully, we can have a good season and if that happens that usually means you’ll be getting noticed (by England) as well so it all ties in.”