Shaun Wane’s Insight on England’s Rugby League Plans

Rugby League Update: Shaun Wane Discusses England’s Plans for the Year Ahead

England Rugby League head coach Shaun Wane met with the media this week, providing an in-depth look at the national team’s upcoming fixtures and selection plans. Amidst the NRL coaching speculation surrounding Wane’s future, the seasoned tactician remains focused on guiding England through a critical period for the sport.

Younger Squad for Upcoming Test Against France

Wane confirmed that the upcoming Test against France will feature a younger, less experienced squad, with an eye on preparing the team for the 2026 Rugby League World Cup.

“It’s going to be a blend of people who’ve done it in the past for me, people who have performed for me in the past.. but I want people who are going to be good for The Ashes so it’s going to be quite young,” he stated, emphasizing the long-term view for the national team.

Super League-Based Squad, No NRL Stars

Regarding player availability, Wane revealed that the squad will be entirely Super League-based, with no big-name NRL stars such as Victor Radley, Herbie Farnworth, Dom Young, Kai Pearce-Paul, or John Bateman joining the camp.

“It’ll be all Super League-based without a shadow of a doubt, and hopefully some young players will shine,” the coach said, providing an opportunity for domestic-based talent to stake their claim.

Coaching Staff and Player Commitment

In terms of the coaching staff, Wane will be joined by assistant Andy Last for the France Test, but Lee Briers is expected to join the setup for the upcoming two-match series against Samoa later this year. Wane expressed confidence in the squad’s commitment, stating that the conversations with club CEOs and players have been “really positive,” with everyone eager to represent England.

Selection Dilemma at Hooker

The selection dilemma at hooker remains, with Wane acknowledging the strong credentials of Danny Walker, Daryl Clark, and Wigan Warriors’ Brad O’Neill, who is yet to earn his first international call-up.

“Brad is a good player, Danny is a good player and Daryl is brilliant – they’ll all put their hands up and have a chance of playing in France,” the coach said, hinting at an intriguing battle for the coveted hooking positions.

As Shaun Wane continues to navigate the challenges of the international Rugby League landscape, his commitment to building a strong, youthful England squad for the future remains evident. With the upcoming Test against France and the Samoa series later in the year, the national team’s journey towards the 2026 Rugby League World Cup is well underway.

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