EXILES coach Brian McClennan has confirmed his squad to face England in the CarPlan International Origin Match at Headingley Carnegie on Friday June 10 (8pm).
From his initial 22-man squad, the Kiwi born McClennan has omitted Warrington Wolves’ Michael Monaghan, Catalan Dragons’ Steve Menzies, St Helens prop Josh Perry and Leeds Rhinos full-back Brent Webb.
The 18-man squad, which is made up of seven Australians and 11 players representing New Zealand and the Pacific nations, reported to their Leeds training base on Sunday night and McClennan was delighted with how quickly the team got into shape ahead of Friday’s battle against England.
“The players have come straight into camp with a great attitude and have gelled really well, which is very positive,” said McClennan.
“We are representing all the nations Down Under and it is an honour to be part of the first ever International Origin Game.
“There is a real buzz about the camp and the players are looking forward to training hard this week, understanding our combinations and the way we want them to play. By Friday we will be ready for the match and giving it our all to win.”
Due to the maximum three player per club rule, the former New Zealand and Leeds Rhinos coach was forced to leave out a player each from Warrington and St Helens respectively, but despite the selection predicament, McClennan is pleased to finally get working on his squad.
“Having to reduce the squad down to the 18 has been difficult and I would like to thank those players who have missed out – they have taken it well,” explained McClennan.
“It is always difficult to leave quality players out and at any other time those players would have easily been involved – that shows the depth of overseas talent in the Engage Super League.”
Pre-purchased tickets for the CarPlan International Origin Match start from £19 for adults and £12 concessions and are available at www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or 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.
Details of the Exiles 18-man squad are below:
Danny Buderus (captain) (Leeds Rhinos & Australia), Thomas Leuluai (vice captain) (Wigan Warriors & New Zealand), Louis Anderson (Warrington Wolves & New Zealand), George Carmont (Wigan Warriors & New Zealand), Rangi Chase (Castleford Tigers & New Zealand), David Fa’alogo (Huddersfield Giants & New Zealand), David Faiumu (Huddersfield Giants & New Zealand), Craig Fitzgibbon (Hull FC & Australia), Brett Hodgson (Warrington Wolves & Australia), Matt King (Warrington Wolves & Australia), Kylie Leuluai (Leeds Rhinos & New Zealand), Willie Manu (Hull FC & Tonga), Francis Meli (St Helens & New Zealand), Glenn Morrison (Wakefield Trinity Wildcats & Australia), Mark O’Meley (Hull FC & Australia), Tony Puletua (St Helens & New Zealand), Pat Richards (Wigan Warriors & Australia), Iosia Soliola (St Helens & New Zealand).