Mental focus a vital part of comeback says England’s Kallum Watkins

Kallum Watkins

Kallum Watkins says his focus on mental health has played a huge part in the return to form that has seen him recalled to the England set-up under Shaun Wane.

Watkins, 31, made his return to the field earlier this year after a long 10-month stint on the sidelines through injury.

The former Leeds captain underwent surgery on a meniscus and MCL injury, only to discover a tear in his ACL during the operation.

It was the third time he had suffered the injury. And he has told Love Rugby League that a focus on his mental state has helped with his comeback.

His form with club Salford has seen him earn another call-up to the England side for their mid-season international test against the Combined Nations All Stars.

Hard work paying off says Kallum Watkins

“For me it’s all been about getting back playing and getting back in a confident mood and on the field,” Watkins told Love Rugby League.

“The hard work is paying off in a way. I think I’m just taking my time making sure that I’ve been right mentally on and off the field.

“It’s been a huge impact in terms of getting back playing. This is really special and I want to take advantage of it as much as possible.

“I think making sure that the off-field stuff and making sure mentally and physically I’m in a good place; that’s the most important thing outside of the rugby side of it.

“I think everything off the field is more important than the game. It sets you in good stead and I think it’s helped massively.

“For me, setting small goals at a time. The other times I’ve had these injuries, I’ve set long-term goals and not looked at the short-term. I try live in the moment a little bit more and I think it’s worked massively this time.

“I’m enjoying being back playing and to be back in this set-up I’m truly grateful for it.”

Podcast: Kallum Watkins on playing in the pack, time in NRL and World Cup ambitions

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About Josh McAllister 1514 Articles
Journalist. Joined the Love Rugby League team full time at the start of 2022 having been a freelance reporter for several years. Previously media manager for Swinton and Rochdale.

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