Two Wolves named in RLWC2013 England Squad
England RL coach Steve McNamara and his coaching staff have named Wolves' duo, Ben Westwood and Chris Hill, in the 24-man squad for Rugby League World Cup 2013 taking place in England and Wales this October/November.
The Wolves will be seeking a first ever Super League Grand Final win when they face Wigan Warriors at Old Trafford on Saturday, and the selection of Westwood and Hill in the England squad for Rugby League World Cup 2013 will have supplied a further confidence ahead of the showdown.
Westwood has enjoyed another impressive season in primrose and blue, and was particularly influential in the team's recent win over Huddersfield Giants, which set up the Grand Final clash with Wigan. The second rower has been a mainstay of the England squad in recent years and has plenty of experience of facing Australia, as Steve McNamara's men prepare for their Opening Ceremony match against the Kangaroos at the Millennium Stadium on October 26.
Meanwhile, Hill's mercurial rise to stardom has continued with selection in the squad. Until 2012, Hill was playing for Leigh Centurions in the Championship, but he has rapid progress since joining the Wolves and is now rated as one of the best prop forwards in the world.
Both players will be desperate to show why they have been selected when they pull on the Warrington jersey for a final time in 2013 against Wigan on Saturday evening.
A close battle is anticipated before England representatives from both sides turn their attentions to the challenges of Rugby League World Cup 2013.
Alongside the Wolves' pair the England squad also includes the three Burgess brothers making it the first time that three brothers have been selected in the international squad.
Leeds Rhinos Kevin Sinfield will lead a squad looking to become the first home nation's team to win the World Cup since 1972, when Great Britain edged Australia in the final league placings.
The Rhinos and Wigan Warriors have the biggest representation with six players each and Souths, who play in the Australian premier competition the NRL, have three. The other clubs represented are Canterbury Bulldogs, Castleford Tigers, Huddersfield Giants, Hull FC, Melbourne Storm, St Helens and Widnes Vikings (one each).
England Rugby League coach, Steve McNamara, said: "After three years of excellent preparation and the success of the England Elite Training programme during that period, we are ready for the Rugby League World Cup 2013.
"We are fully aware that the Rugby League World Cup 2013 will once again be fiercely contested and that this squad will need to work extremely hard and play to a very high level to win the tournament and we believe we have selected a squad capable of doing just that.
"As we have seen in previous tournaments, we will need all members of the squad ready to step up and make vital contributions and we feel that all 24 players have the ability to do that.
"To have a World Cup on home soil is a massive opportunity for the sport and I hope the public will turn up in their numbers and show their support for England."
England begin their preparations with a training camp in Potchefstroom, South Africa. The majority of the squad travelled to South Africa on yesterday with the remaining players, involved in the Super League Grand Final, joining up on Monday October 7.
England have a warm-up game against Italy on Saturday October 19 at the Salford City Stadium (kick off 4.30pm) with the England Knights also in action on the same day against Samoa (kick off 2.00pm).
England start their Rugby League World Cup 2013 campaign on Saturday October 26 when they take on Australia at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff (2.30pm).
Their other group matches are:
England v Ireland, Saturday November 2, John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield (2.30pm)
England v Fiji, Saturday November 9, KC Stadium, Hull (2.30pm)
Tickets for the Rugby League World Cup 2013 are available now at www.rlwc2013.com/tickets or call the 24-hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 2013.
England squad for Rugby League World Cup 2013
(Professional club and community club shown):
Carl Ablett (Leeds Rhinos, Hunslet Parkside), Tom Briscoe (Hull FC, Featherstone Lions), George Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor), Sam Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor), Tom Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor), Rob Burrow (Leeds Rhinos, Featherstone Lions), Josh Charnley (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), Rangi Chase (Castleford Tigers, Dannevirke Tigers), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield Giants, Newsome Panthers), Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), James Graham (Canterbury Bulldogs, Blackbrook), Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos, Oulton Raiders), Zak Hardaker (Leeds Rhinos, Featherstone Lions), Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves, New Spring Lions), Gareth Hock (Widnes Vikings, Wigan St Judes), Michael McIlorum (Wigan Warriors, Queens), Lee Mossop (Wigan Warriors, Hensingham), Sean O'Loughlin (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patrick), James Roby (St Helens, Blackbrook), Kevin Sinfield (captain) (Leeds Rhinos, Waterhead), Sam Tomkins (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks), Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos, Latchford Albion), Ben Westwood (Warrington Wolves, Normanton), Gareth Widdop (Melbourne Storm, King Cross)
RLWC2013 matches at The Halliwell Jones Stadium
Group match: Samoa v New Zealand, Sunday 27th October, 6pm
Quarter Final: Sunday 17th November, 3pm
02, Oct, 2013