15 May 2023
FOUR GIANTS SELECTED FOR ACADEMY ORIGIN II
Huddersfield Giants Academy stars Max Merta, Jack Billington, Jack Hudson and Matty Hanley have all been selected for Academy Origin II.
Academy Origin II: Anderson names Lancashire and Yorkshire squads
Head of England Pathways, Paul Anderson, has named the squads for the second game of this year’s three-match Academy Origin series which takes place at Hull KR’s Sewell Group Craven Park stadium on Saturday 27 May.
Lancashire enjoyed a clean sweep in 2022 and won the first of this year’s matches 40-22 at Castleford last month, with St Helens second-row Jon Vaughan and Warrington Wolves wing Jake Thewlis each scoring a brace of tries.
And while Anderson makes only three changes to the 21-strong Lancashire squad for game two, there are eight new faces in the Yorkshire squad as the white rose bid to level the series.
For Lancashire, in come St Helens pair Jake Davies and George Whitby, and Wigan Warriors’ full-back Noah Hodginson. Yorkshire bring in Leeds Rhinos quintet Leo Aliyu, Fergus McCormack, Joe Phillips, Jack Smith and Neil Tchamambe, alongside two more Smiths – Kull KR’s Thomas and Wakefield Trinity’s Harvey – and Rovers centre Louix Gorman.
Paul Anderson, Head of England Pathways, says: “Academy Origin is where we identify and develop the players who have the potential to become elite performers on the domestic and international stage, and I’m really excited to be able to introduce some fresh faces for game two. Lancashire were outstanding at Castleford in the first game – now it’s up to the Yorkshire lads to turn things around.
“We’re building towards the first England Academy international since 2019, at St Gaudens in France on 8 July, so there’s everything for these lads to play for.”
Kick off at the Sewell Group Craven Park stadium is 12.30pm and entry is free.
Joe Bajer (Warrington Wolves), Ryan Brown (Wigan Warriors), Leon Cowan, Owen Dagnall, Jake Davies (all St Helens), Jack Farrimond (Wigan Warriors), Ben Hartill (Warrington Wolves), Noah Hodkinson, Taylor Kerr, Nathan Lowe (all Wigan Warriors), Thomas McKinney (Warrington Wolves), Lukas Mason, Tom Ratchford (both Wigan Warriors), Will Roberts, Harry Robertson, Dayon Sambou, Noah Stephens (all St Helens), Jake Thewlis, Nolan Tupaea (both Warrington Wolves), Jon Vaughan, George Whitby (both St Helens)
Leo Aliyu (Leeds Rhinos), Kye Armstrong (Hull FC), Jack Billington (Huddersfield Giants), Jack Charles (Hull FC), Lennie Ellis, Louix Gorman (both Hull KR), Lucas Green (Warrington Wolves), Matt Hanley, Jack Hudson (both Huddersfield Giants), Will Hutchinson (Hull FC), Ben Littlewood, Fergus McCormack (both Leeds Rhinos), Max Merta (Huddersfield Giants), Joe Phillips (Leeds Rhinos), Harvey Smith (Wakefield Trinity), Jack Smith (Leeds Rhinos), Thomas Smith (Hull KR), Cai Taylor Wray (Warrington Wolves), Neil Tchamambe (Leeds Rhinos), Cobie Wainhouse (Hull FC), Ethan Wood (Wakefield Trinity)
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.
The 2023 Academy Origin series concludes at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Friday 18 August.