Scotland start journey to World Cup quarter-final dream

 

Scotland have named eight Super League players in their 20-man squad for Sunday’s Alitalia European Cup tie against Ireland in Edinburgh.

Among the eight are ex-Catalan hooker Ben Fisher, who this week confirmed he will be joining London Broncos as assistant coach, and Huddersfield back-rower Dale Ferguson.

Castleford pair Jonathan Walker and Paul Jackson, who will play for Whitehaven in 2013, are also included, alongside Walker’s twin brother Adam.

Young Leeds hooker Liam Hood, Wigan utility back Shae Lyon-Fraser and Hull KR‘s David Scott complete the eight, while there are four players in the squad from Scottish champions Edinburgh Eagles.

Lee Paterson returns to the fold in the absence of John Duffy, who was forced to retire through injury this week.

Coach Dave Rotheram said: “We’ve got a mixture of experience and youth in the squad but they are all so passionate about representing Scotland.

“We’ve got Ferguson, Fisher and Mitchell Stringer, who all missed last year, and Paul Jackson is back too, plus three young new boys who are making their mark on Super League: the Walker twins and Liam Hood. They are fabulous acquisitions for us. They can grow their international career in our squad.

“The ultimate aim is Friday 15 November 2013: the World Cup quarter-final at Headingley. That is the dream and we are on that cycle now. We have to lay the foundations now and we have talked about it today. Some of the lads have played at Leeds on a Friday night and they spoke about how that feels. We’re starting the preparations for that now.

“We need to lay a marker down in this tournament. The players want to win the European Cup. Scotland have never won a senior tournament and if we play to our potential then we can win this.”

After this Sunday, Scotland play England Knights at Meggetland in Edinburgh on Sunday 28 October.

SCOTLAND 20-MAN SQUAD

Paul Jackson, Jonathan Walker (Castleford Tigers), Ben Fisher (Catalans Dragons), Craig Borthwick, Callum Cockburn, Tom Murray, Dave Vernon (Edinburgh Eagles), Josh Barlow, Sam Barlow (Halifax), Dale Ferguson, Adam Walker (Huddersfield Giants), David Scott (Hull Kingston Rovers), Liam Hood (Leeds Rhinos), Lee Paterson (Mackay Cutters), Andrew Henderson, Mitchell Stringer, Alex Szostak (Sheffield Eagles), Alex Hurst (Swinton Lions), Shae Lyon-Fraser (Wigan Warriors), Brett Carter (Workington Town).

 

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