McNamara casts eye over England group

England boss Steve McNamara has been casting his eye over a group of 37 players at a team-building session near Liverpool ahead of the Four Nations.

The players were put through their paces by the Royal Marines at Altcar Rifle Range, undertaking a series of motivational and fitness tasks.

Amongst the 37 was former Tongan international Willie Manu, who is consideration for England selection pending confirmation of his eligibility.

The Hull back-rower was joined by his team mates Kirk Yeaman and Tom Briscoe, while the squad contains four players from McNamara’s former club Bradford – Jamie Langley, Nick Scruton, Paul Sykes and Andy Lynch.

Super League leaders Wigan were represented by just two players – Sam Tomkins and Sean O’Loughlin – while title chasing Warrington made up seven of the squad (Richie Myler, Ben Westwood, Adrian Morley, Garreth Carvell, Ben Harrison, Chris Bridge and Ryan Atkins)

“It was a very positive experience for everyone involved,” said McNamara. “I learned a few things about the players and they in turn will have taken a lot from it.

“We don’t get many opportunities to get the country’s elite players together so the chance to work alongside the Royal Marines was really useful.

“All the players involved are potential candidates for selection for this year’s Four Nations but that’s not to say the final squad will come from this group. It’s certainly not a definitive list.”

The squad obviously didn’t contain any potential representatives from Down Under, the likes of Sam Burgess, Gareth Ellis and Gareth Widdop, but did included previously uncapped trio Jodie Broughton (Salford), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield) and Ben Jones-Bishop (Harlequins/Leeds).

England players will next come together at the end of the regular Engage Super League season when players not involved in the play-offs will join a train-on squad. Further players will then join the train-on squad as their clubs are eliminated from the play-offs.

The 37 players who were involved on Tuesday at Liverpool were:

Chris Bridge (Warrington), Tom Briscoe (Hull FC), Kyle Eastmond (St Helens), James Graham (St Helens), Ryan Hall (Leeds), Sean O`Loughlin (Wigan), Danny McGuire (Leeds), Adrian Morley (Warrington), Jamie Peacock (Leeds), James Roby (St Helens), Nick Scruton (Bradford), Michael Shenton (Castleford), Kevin Sinfield (Leeds), Sam Tomkins (Wigan), Ben Westwood (Warrington), Shaun Lunt (Huddersfield), Kevin Brown (Huddersfield), Richard Myler (Warrington), Ryan Atkins (Warrington), Jodie Broughton (Salford), Leroy Cudjoe (Huddersfield), Peter Fox (Hull KR), Lee Smith (Leeds), Gareth Carvell (Warrington), Ben Harrison (Warrington), Jamie Langley (Bradford), Tony Clubb (Harlequins RL), Ben Jones-Bishop (Harlequins RL), Andy Lynch (Bradford), Joe Westerman (Castleford), Kirk Yeaman (Hull), Louie McCarthy Scarsbrook (Harlequins), Eorl Crabtree (Huddersfield), Scott Moore (St Helens), Paul Sykes (Bradford), Jon Wilkin (St Helens), Willie Manu (Hull FC).

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