Wakefield Trinity trio retain places in revised England Rugby League performance squads

James Batchelor. PIC: Matthew Merrick.
James Batchelor. PIC: Matthew Merrick.

Wakefield Trinity trio Reece Lyne, Tom Johnstone and James Batchelor have retained their respective places in the England Rugby League performance squads.

Johnstone - despite suffering a season-ending ACL injury against Hull FC earlier this year - and Lyne have been kept in a revised England Elite Performance Squad.

Blake Austin is the only new face in the squad, with the Sydney-born player qualifying to play for England through his grandmother.

Meanwhile, Batchelor, who made his return from injury against Castleford Tigers on Friday night, has been included in a revised England Knights squad.

Leeds Rhinos centre Harry Newman, who has played for Featherstone Rovers on dual registration, and Huddersfield Giants forward Oliver Wilson are new selections along with London Broncos duo Jordan Abdull and Rob Butler.

Castleford's Oliver Holmes, along with Adam O’Brien, Oliver Roberts, Dean Hadley and Harvey Livett are omitted from the first Knights of 2019 which was announced in March.

The Knights will play a historic friendly with Jamaica, at Headingley on Sunday, October 20.

Jamaica's unlikely rugby league success continued last autumn when they beat the USA to qualify for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup.

Kevin Sinfield, the RFL's Rugby Director who leads the England Performance Unit, said: “This is a fixture that works on so many levels, and I hope it will capture the imagination of Rugby League supporters and Jamaicans in Leeds, Yorkshire and well beyond.

“The Knights are an important part of the EPU as we build towards hosting the World Cup in 2021, and it was a priority to find them meaningful competition again this autumn after the unique experiences they gained in Papua New Guinea last year.

“The way the Jamaica team has developed over the last few years to reach the World Cup has already been a bit of a Rugby League fairytale, and it’s great that the Knights can help them with their preparations for RLWC2021.”