Webb gets Exiles call

Exiles coach Brian McClennan has named Leeds Rhinos full-back Brent Webb as the seventh selection for his 22-man squad that will take on England in the International Origin Match at Headingley Carnegie on Friday June 10 (8.00pm).

The Exiles will be selected from the cream of Australian and New Zealand talent currently playing in the Engage Super League and Webb joins Exiles captain and Leeds Rhinos team-mate Danny Buderus in an exciting squad which also features fellow Kiwi international Thomas Leuluai of Wigan.

“It feels great to be selected,” said Webb. “Everyone is looking forward to this game and everybody wants to be a part of it, so I am very happy to be selected.

“I am really looking forward to playing with the likes of Rangi Chase and teaming back up with Thomas Leuluai. Usually I am playing against many of the Exiles squad so it will be really good to come together and play alongside some of these quality players.

“It is a long time since I have been involved in a representative match and this is the equivalent for us international players over here. I know that everybody in the squad wants to play and we will treat this match like a Test match.

“It is a incredible concept that has been built up really well with a lot of hype around this game and the fans being involved in the game is fantastic. It will be a great match and I encourage everyone to come down and watch the game at Headingley.”

Webb will be reunited with former Leeds Rhinos and New Zealand coach Brian McClennan who will take the reins of the Exiles team taking on England, a position Webb feels McClennan is perfect for.

“It will be great to work with ‘Bluey’ again,” said Webb. “I think that I probably had home advantage having Brian McClennan as my coach at Leeds not so long ago, but I am glad to have been selected.

“It will be good to have him back in the UK and I am sure he will really enjoy coaching the Exiles team. He is the perfect man for the job and he will get a great team together.

England are getting better and better. They have a lot of young players coming through and Steve McNamara is having faith in the young talented players which is great for the game and great for the England team.

“I hope that we can give them a good game in June. The Australians have a couple of tests throughout the year and the State of Origin, so hopefully this International Origin Match will prepare England a little bit more for the Four Nations in the autumn.”

In a unique concept to British sport, the final Exiles 22-man squad will be chosen in part by the public. The fans have chosen 13 of the 22 squad members to face England and the remaining nine selections will be made by the Exiles coach, Brian McClennan, and his assistant Terry Matterson.

Pre-purchased tickets for the International Origin Match start from £19 for adults and £12 concessions and are available at www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.ukor by contacting the RFL Ticket Office on 0844 856 1113. Tickets purchased on the day of the match start from £22 for adults and £15 for concessions.

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