FIVE Warrington players have been called up to England’s Elite Performance squad, including long-term absentee Ben Currie.
Currie, who is recovering from knee surgery, is joined by skipper Chris Hill, hooker Daryl Clark, Prop Mike Cooper and full-back Stefan Ratchford by England Head Coach, Wayne Bennett and his coaching staff, as part of a 25-man Elite Performance Squad (EPS) in preparation for the second phase of the season.
Only St Helens with six players have more players in squad.
In June, England defeated New Zealand 36-18 at Mile High Stadium, Denver in the first international game to be played in the USA for 18 years as part of their preparations for this Autumn’s three-match Test Series against the Kiwis.
England Elite Men’s Squad will also play France in a warm-up game on Wednesday, October 17 (KO 7.45pm) at Leigh Sports Village.
On the Elite Performance Squad, Bennett said, “Myself and staff have been monitoring players every week throughout the season so far.
“The 14 Super League players that travelled over for the Denver Test have been selected including Jake Connor and Luke Thompson who were promoted from the England Knights Performance Squad and proved their commitment and value to the squad.
“It was a very positive and productive camp which resulted in a great performance against the Kiwis and I’m pleased with the progress we’ve made so far this year.
“We’re welcoming two recalls to the squad and one new addition and the door will remain open for the remainder of the season as we head towards the International Test Series against New Zealand later this year.”
Meanwhile Warrington Wolves’ Jack Hughes and Harvey Livett have been called up by England Knights Head Coach Paul Anderson as part of a 31-man Knights Performance Squad (KPS) in preparation for taking on Papua New Guinea in two test matches later in the season.
Pictures Eddie Whitham
England Rugby League Elite Performance Squad
Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers)
Mike McMeeken (Castleford Tigers)
Adam Milner (Castleford Tigers)
Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield Giants)
Jake Connor (Hull FC)
Scott Taylor (Hull FC)
Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos)
Stevie Ward (Leeds Rhinos)
Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos)
Jonny Lomax (St Helens)
Tommy Makinson (St Helens)
Mark Percival (St Helens)
James Roby (St Helens)
Luke Thompson (St Helens)
Alex Walmsley (St Helens)
Tom Johnstone (Wakefield Trinity)
Daryl Clark (Warrington Wolves)
Mike Cooper (Warrington Wolves)
Ben Currie (Warrington Wolves)
Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves)
Stefan Ratchford (Warrington Wolves)
John Bateman (Wigan Warriors)
Sean O’Loughlin (Wigan Warriors)
Sam Tomkins (Wigan Warriors)
George Williams (Wigan Warriors)