England Women Head Coach Chris Chapman has named a 22-strong squad for his team’s tour to France next week.
Players from four different clubs will be represented, with reigning champions Thatto Heath-St Helens boasting seven members, while nine players come from Bradford Bulls, alongside five representatives from Featherstone Rovers, including captain Andrea Dobson, who picked up her first England cap aged 16.
Meanwhile, goalkicking full back Katie Hepworth is Castleford Tigers’ first-ever England Women representative.
Thatto Heath’s Tara Jones, a regular referee in the National Conference League, is amongst a number of re-calls to the squad, alongside West Sussex-born former Southampton Spitfires player Stacey White, now of Bradford Bulls, who enjoyed a recent stint with South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Full England Women squad for tour to France:
Amy Hardcastle – Bradford Bulls
Andrea Dobson – Featherstone Rovers
Brogan Churm – Featherstone Rovers
Charlotte Booth – Bradford Bulls
Chantelle Crowl – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Claire Garner – Bradford Bulls
Danika Priim – Bradford Bulls
Emily Rudge – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Faye Gaskin – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Jenny Welsby – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Jess Courtman – Bradford Bulls
Katie Hepworth – Castleford Tigers
Kayleigh Bulman – Featherstone Rovers
Kirsty Moroney – Bradford Bulls
Lois Forsell – Bradford Bulls
Natalie Harrowell – Featherstone Rovers
Rachel Thompson – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Shona Hoyle – Bradford Bulls
Sinead Peach – Featherstone Rovers
Stacey White – Bradford Bulls
Tara Jones – Thatto Heath-St Helens
Tara Stanley – Thatto Heath-St Helens
The squad will fly out on Monday, June 19 and play two fixtures against the French National Team on Wednesday, June 21 and Friday, June 24, as they step up their preparations ahead of a historic World Cup campaign in Australia during November and December.
Test One – v France. Wednesday, June 21, 6.00pm kick off
Test Two – v France. Saturday, June 24, 5.00pm kick off
Stade de la Mer, Perpignan
This year will be the first time ever the women’s and men’s Rugby League World Cups will be played concurrently, with the women’s World Cup final played as a curtain-raiser to the men’s World Cup final at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium on December 2.
Report courtesy of Women’s Rugby League