FIVE LEEDS Rhinos players and seven from Castleford Tigers have been named in the England women’s squad for a trip to Papua New Guinea in November.
Several of them are also included in a 16-player squad for the Downer World Cup Nines in Sydney the previous month.
Rhinos resume their Super League campaign – following last week’s Challenge Cup final win over Castleford – when they take on York City Knights at Weetwood tomorrow.
Tigers are at home to Bradford Bulls, Featherstone Rovers host Wigan Warriors and Wakefield Trinity visit St Helens.
Subject to contract confirmation, England will play two Tests against the PNG Orchids, the first at a Papuan Highlands venue on Saturday, November 9 and the second a week later in the capital Port Moresby.
That will be part of a double-header also featuring Great Britain versus the PNG Kumuls, the final Test of the Rugby League Lions’ southern hemisphere tour.
Kevin Sinfield, the RFL’s rugby director, who heads the England Performance Unit, said: “This is a really significant tour, for the EPU and the England Women, but also for women’s rugby league and international rugby league.
“Just as we were delighted to expose our England Knights players to the unique experiences and challenges of a trip to Papua New Guinea last year as part of the preparation for the men’s World Cup in 2021, this tour presents our women with a completely new challenge.”
England’s 24-player squad is: Dannielle Anderson, Caitlin Beevers, Charlotte Booth (all Leeds Rhinos), Leah Burke, Chantelle Crowl, Jodie Cunningham (all St Helens), Grace Field (Castleford Tigers), Faye Gaskin (St Helens), Kelsey Gentles (Castleford), Rebecca Greenfield (Wigan Warriors), Amy Hardcastle (Bradford Bulls), Shona Hoyle (Castleford), Amy Johnson (Leeds), Tara Jones (St Helens), Shannon Lacey (Leeds), Sinead Peach, Tamzin Renouf, Georgia Roche (all Castleford), Emily Rudge (St Helens), Tara-Jane Stanley (Castleford), Rachel Thompson (Wigan), Vicky Whitfield, Naomi Williams (both St Helens), Georgia Wilson (Wigan).
The 16 players selected for the Downer World Nines are: Anderson, Beevers, Burke, Crowl, Cunningham, Gaskin, Gentles, Hardcastle, Hoyle, Lacey, Rhiannion Marshall (Castleford), Peach, Roche, Rudge, Stanley and Williams.