England coach Shaun Wane makes two changes to his squad for second Tonga test

Drew Darbyshire
Matty Ashton England RL Alamy

Matty Ashton in action for England - Alamy

England coach Shaun Wane has made two changes to his 19-man squad for their second test against Tonga in Huddersfield.

Warrington winger Matty Ashton is set to make his second international appearance for England in the absence of St Helens flier Tommy Makinson, who misses out through a wrist injury he sustained in the series opener last week.

Ashton’s Warrington team-mate Ben Currie is the second change, with the Wire back-rower replacing St Helens powerhouse Morgan Knowles, who has been ruled out of the rest of the series with a thumb injury he picked up in last Sunday’s 22-18 victory.

NRL superstar Dom Young will play no part in the series after being hospitalised with an infection ahead of the first test.

Huddersfield prop Chris Hill will make his 35th full international appearance on home ground at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday. James Graham (44) and Ryan Hall (40) are the only players to have made more full international appearances for England.

England will be once again captained by St Helens full-back Jack Welsby whilst main skipper George Williams serves the second of his two-match suspension.

England squad to face Tonga in second test

Matty Ashton (Warrington Wolves)

John Bateman (Wests Tigers)

Tom Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs)

Daryl Clark (Warrington Wolves)

Ben Currie (Warrington Wolves)

Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors)

Chris Hill (Huddersfield Giants)

Tom Johnstone (Catalans Dragons)

Toby King (Wigan Warriors)

Matty Lees (St Helens)

Mikey Lewis (Hull KR)

Victor Radley (Sydney Roosters)

Harry Smith (Wigan Warriors)

Danny Waker (Warrington Wolves)

Jack Welsby (St Helens)

Elliott Whitehead (Canberra Raiders)

Shaun Wane pleased to give Matty Ashton his chance to shine

Wane said: “Matty Ashton impressed me earlier in the year during the mid-season international against France and has continued on the same path over the last few weeks.

“I’m really pleased to be able to give him an opportunity against Tonga.

“Last week was a real battle of attrition and we fought hard to come out on top, but we still have work to do to win this three-game series.

“We know that Tonga will be hurt, they’ll come out even stronger, and will be seeking revenge this weekend. It is up to us to ensure that doesn’t happen and we come away with the victory – and the series.

“The England fans came out in force at St Helens last week and we need a repeat of that at Huddersfield on Saturday.”

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