WAKEFIELD Wildcats captain Glenn Morrison has received a call-up to the Exiles squad for the inaugural clash with England at Headingley next Friday.
Former Leeds Rhinos head coach Brian McClennan, who is leading the Exiles, announced his final three coach’s picks today and Morrison has got the nod to feature.
Huddersfield forward David Fa’alogo and Josh Perry of St Helens have also been picked to take the Exiles squad up to 22.
Leeds Rhinos hooker Danny Buderas will captain the Exiles, while Jamie Peacock has been named as the England captain.
And Morrison is honoured to be selected for the one-off game.
“Hopefully I can make that final cut and hopefully go out there and get the chance to whack the poms,” he joked.
“To be picked in a squad with such great skill and talent in there and a chance to play international rugby is a great thrill.”
The clash between England and the Exiles, a team of overseas players currently competing in the Super League, replaces the usual mid-season clash between England and France.
The Wildcats skipper has made comparisons of the game with the hugely successful State of Origin clash in Australia.
And he believes it will be a big success - both for the fans and for the England team.
“I think it’s great, it’s similar to the State of Origin series back home [in Australia], mate against mate, and it took a little while for that to take off,” he said.
“I’m sure everyone who puts an England jersey on will get a lift and I’m sure everyone picked in the Exiles squad will be exactly the same, they’ll be going out there to try and win the match and try and be as tough as they can and I think the fans will really get behind it.
“The State of Origin series is mid-season and I think it’s good for the Australian international game to have that competition when it is. For the England team it’ll be great for them to be able to play a game like this mid-season and it’ll only help them for the Four Nations at the end of the year.”
“Both teams have been picked on the talent at the time and the current performances. Danny Brough has been the form half in the competition and it’s good to see he’s been drawn into the squad so I think when you have two teams picked on players performing well it’s going to be a big battle.”
Wakefield face Huddersfield Giants, who have six players involved with England and the Exiles, at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium just two days after the contest.
But Morrison doesn’t think the international game will have much of an impact on the following Super League contest.
He said: “In Australia they play both games and play the day after as well so it just depends how you pull up afterwards,” he said.
“If the body feels alright you can keep going. You’ve got the Easter period here where you play three games in a week anyway so it’s not too different to that.”
Morrison joked: “I think they’ve [Huddersfield] got a few in both squads so I might try and get a couple of knocks in to soften them up for the lads.”
See this week’s Wakefield Express Sport for all the latest Wakefield Wildcats news.