The selection of no less than 12 potential Rugby League World Cup 2013 ‘home nation’ stars in the 2013 Super League Dream has set tongues wagging ahead of next month’s Opening Ceremony at the Millennium Stadium.
Six current England internationals, a Scotland star and several more gunning for selection in Steve McNamara’s squad make up the team, though for the first time there is no place for any of Super League’s overseas stars.
The current England squad is represented by Sam Tomkins, Josh Charnley, Leroy Cudjoe, Eorl Crabtree, Brett Ferres and Sean O’Loughlin.
On the outside of the Elite Training Squad, but hoping their selection in the Dream Team will boost their chances of selection at RLWC2013, are Ben Crooks, Tom Lineham, Matty Smith, Shaun Lunt and Danny Kirmond.
And completing the line-up are Leeds Rhinos prop forward Jamie Peacock, who retired from international Rugby League last year, and Scotland half-back Danny Brough.
Wigan half-back Smith is one player who hopes the recognition of his performances in Super League this year can force him into the reckoning for England selection.
“It’s a tremendous honour to have been named in this team and receive recognition for my performances this year,” said Smith.
“All I’ve tried to do this year is play well and perform at a consistent level for Wigan, but it’s wonderful to receive accolades like this on the back of that.
“The competition for places in the half-backs is very strong, but I hope I can perform to a level in the play-offs that puts me in Steve’s thoughts.
“It’d be a dream to play at Rugby League World Cup 2013, and in that Opening Ceremony match at the Millennium Stadium.
“It’s going to be huge, and I just hope I can be a part of it.”
England face Australia at the Millennium Stadium on October 26.
The match follows a spectacular RLWC2013 Opening Ceremony which is already tipped to be “the greatest show Rugby League has ever seen”, and precedes an intriguing clash between Wales and Italy.
Two of the three tiers at the Millennium Stadium are all but sold out, so those without tickets are urged to move quickly and reserve their seat.
Tickets for Rugby League World Cup 2013 are available, but selling quickly. To make sure you will BE THERE buy now at www.rlwc2013.com/tickets or call the 24-hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 2013.
This is Wakefield. Together We Are Stronger.