Sport Rugby

Monday 19 March 2018

Rugby league: 13 uncapped players in Ireland squad

Ian Laybourn

IRELAND coach Mark Aston has included 13 uncapped players in his initial 30-man rugby league squad for his side's Alitalia Cup matches against Scotland and England Knights.

There are seven players from the domestic league, including former Oldham forward Wayne Kerr - a survivor from their successful 2008 World Cup campaign - as Aston looks to build towards the 2013 tournament.

"We are bringing through some new faces who will get their chance to showcase their skills in a good tournament," Aston said.

"It's great to be able to call up new domestic players who have played well for their provinces and for Ireland A.

"This is a good chance for them to be part of the senior squad and show me what they are about."

Ireland's first game is against Scotland in Edinburgh on Sunday, October 14, followed by the visit of England Knights to Belfast's Deramore Park on Saturday, October 20.

That game, which will be the first rugby league international in Belfast since the 2000 World Cup, was due to take place on Friday, October 19 but has been put back a day.

Squad: M Hadden (Antrim Eels), S Deevy (Athboy Longhorns), W Kerr (Country Cowboys), E Cosgrove (Dewsbury), T McKeown, J Taylor (Dublin City Exiles), L Finn (Featherstone, capt), L Ambler, C Casey, P Handforth, S Hesketh (all Halifax), C Roache (Leeds), T Goulden, S Littler, G McNally (all Leigh), J Toole (Mounties), J Mulhern (Oldham), T Bergin, P Smith (Sheffield Eagles), B Guilfoyle, A McCloskey (Treaty City), K Haggerty (Widnes), J Hinchcliffe, S Wellens (both unattached), D Bridge, J Mendeika, T McCarthy (all Warrington), M Haggerty, C Sice (Whitehaven), J O'Donnell (Wigan).

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