Six Saints named for Origin decider

Six of our Academy St. Helens players have been named in the Lancashire squad for the third and final Academy Origin match of 2023. The game will be played this coming Saturday, 19th August at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in Warrington - with kick-off at 12pm.

As the Under 18’s campaign nears its conclusion for 2023, the Saints currently sit top of the Academy Championship table, unbeaten with 10 wins from 10 games. Two fixtures remain in the regular season for the Red V with a big home game coming up against Wigan Warriors Academy at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Saturday, 26th August, followed by an away day against Wakefield Trinity in September.

Before those two games though, this weekend six of our Saints are available for selection for Lancashire following their inclusion by Head of England Pathways, Paul Anderson, who named the squads for the third and final Academy Origin encounter of 2023.

Our Origin Saints are: Harvey Braddish, Owen Dagnall, Jake Davies, Harry Robertson, Noah Stephens, and George Whitby.

A draw at Warrington will be enough for Lancashire to clinch the series for the second year in succession, while Yorkshire must win for a 1-1 share of the spoils. St Helens second-row Jon Vaughan scored two tries when Lancashire won 42-20 in the opening game of the series at Castleford, while a 78th minute try on home turf from Hull KR centre Louix Gorman kept Yorkshire interest alive as the White Rose county fought back to draw the second match 32-32.

Paul Anderson, Head of England Pathways, says: “This is where we identify and develop the players who have the potential to become elite performers on the domestic and international stage, and through Academy Origin and the international against France we’ve learned a lot this year about a lot of players.

“With this game in particular we have a major focus on blooding players from the younger end of the Academy age group, plus some players who have improved during the season. I’m really excited to be able to introduce even more fresh faces for game three, so we’re about to find out who else can make the step up to the next level.”

Lancashire are coached by Shane Eccles of Wigan Warriors, who is assisted by Warrington Wolves Ryan O’Brien. Yorkshire’s head coach is Castleford Tigers’ Rob Nickolay, with Huddersfield Giants’ Leroy Cudjoe – a graduate of the RFL’s player-to-coach’ development programme – alongside him.

Lancashire squad

Joe Bajer (Warrington Wolves), Harvey Braddish, Owen Dagnall, Jake Davies (all St Helens), Jack Farrimond (Wigan Warriors), Zack Gardner, Ben Hartill (both Warrington Wolves), Noah Hodkinson, Trent Kelly-Duffy, Taylor Kerr (all Wigan Warriors), Aaron Lindop (Warrington Wolves), Nathan Lowe, Kian McDermott, Lukas Mason, Thomas Ratchford (all Wigan Warriors), Logan Raughter (Warrington Wolves), Harry Robertson, Noah Stephens, George Whitby (all St Helens)

Yorkshire squad

Jack Charles, Lennon Clark (both Hull FC), Dec Ementon (Leeds Rhinos), Jamie Gill (Bradford Bulls), Zach Fishwick, Louix Gorman (both Hull KR), Bobby Hartley (Leeds Rhinos), Will Hutchinson, Ben Johnson, Will Kirby (all Hull FC), Ben Littlewood, Fergus McCormack, Ned McCormack (all Leeds Rhinos), Logan Moy (Hull FC), Harvey Smith, Cain Staveley-Carr (both Wakefield Trinity), Cai Taylor-Wray (Warrington Wolves), Cobie Wainhouse, Ryan Westerman (both Hull FC)

England RL Academy is part of the RFL’s talent pathway, which also includes England Knights and the senior men’s squad. Several members of the England squad named recently be Shaun Wane are graduates of this pathway, including Leeds Rhinos’ Harry Newman and Mikolaj Oledzki, Matty Lees and Lewis Dodd of St Helens, and Wigan Warriors’ Liam Marshall and Harry Smith.

Ticket Information for this Origin fixture

Admission at the Halliwell Jones Stadium is just £5 adults and £2 concessions via turnstiles 8-10.

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