Brisbane centre Herbie Farnworth is excited to play in front of his family for the first time since leaving school after being named in England’s World Cup squad.
The 22-year-old was born in the small Lancashire village of Blacko, near Burnley. He played his junior rugby at Newton Storm and Wigan St Patrick’s before taking up an opportunity in Australia with NRL giants Brisbane Broncos.
Farnworth has enjoyed a fine start to life in the NRL, scoring 19 tries in 53 appearances for Brisbane since making his first-grade debut in 2019.
However, he hasn’t played for 15 weeks after suffering a bicep injury in June. Farnworth will make his long-awaited return in a World Cup warm-up match against Fiji next Friday. Wane says he has no concern over his fitness.
Farnworth, once on the books at Manchester United, will make his England debut at this autumn’s home World Cup.
“It’s an absolute dream,” Farnworth Love Rugby League. “I’ve not played since Round 12 so my eyes have been firmly on the World Cup.
“I have been speaking to Waney quite a lot through the year. I’ve been telling him how much it would mean to me. I can’t believe it is actually here now and I can’t wait to play on English soil again.
“I’ve not played in front of my family for a long, long time now. I think I was 16 or 17 the last time I played over here so it would be pretty cool to play for England and get a win in the first game.”
Herbie Farnworth knows the challenge of star-studded Samoa
England get their World Cup campaign underway with a clash against Samoa at St James’ Park on October 15.
Many have tipped Samoa to be genuine contenders for World Cup glory this year. Origin stars such as Jarome Luai, Brian To’o, Stephen Crichton, Junior Paulo and Josh Papali’i have pledged their allegiance to the Pacific Island.
Farnworth knows just how strong Samoa are going to be given that he comes up against their players every week.
“It’s a very strong challenge,” he added.
“A couple of those boys got picked in the Australian side but turned them down to play for their home country.
“They’ve got a top quality side with top quality NRL players. I think we’ve got the side to match them and I think we’ve got the side to beat them.”