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Jake Connor and Tom Johnstone among the Cominbed Nations All Stars to face England | Rugby League News

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Jake Connor played for the All Stars against England last year

England duo Jake Connor and Tom Johnstone are both in contention to take on Shaun Wane’s side this summer after being named to the extended Combined Nations All Stars squad.

Hull FC full-back Connor, who played for the Combined Nations against England last year and is of Trinidadian descent, and Wakefield winger Trinity Johnstone – also eligible for Scotland and Germany — were both picked by All Stars coach Ellery Hanley for the mid-season international.

Both players have so far been overlooked by England boss Wane as he plans the revamp of this autumn’s Rugby World Cup but should be given a chance to impress in the All Stars game, which is taking place at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in Warrington on June 18. part of a double header which sees England women take on France and is live on sky sports.

“I spoke to each of these players personally because I think it’s the right way to do things, and I was overwhelmed and so impressed with how they reacted,” said the former British Captain Hanley.

“It was important for me to talk about the values ​​and qualities I expect from them, and the message I got from them was that they are ready to go – and so proud to have the chance to get involved.”

Hanley’s side could also feature several of England’s potential Samoan World Cup opponents, with the two sides facing off in the tournament’s opener at St James’ Park in Newcastle on October 15.

Hanley’s squad includes nine players of Samoan descent in Sam Kasiano (Catalans Dragons), Danny Levi, Ricky Leutele (both Huddersfield Giants), Mason Lino (Wakefield), Ligi Sao, Carlos Tuimavave (both Hull FC), Tim Lafai, Ken Sio (Salford Red Devils) and Peter Mata’utia (Warrington Wolves).

Tom Johnstone produced this incredible skill to set up a try for Wakefield Trinity in their victory over Toulouse Olympique in the Betfred Super League.

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Tom Johnstone produced this incredible skill to set up a try for Wakefield Trinity in their victory over Toulouse Olympique in the Betfred Super League.

Tom Johnstone produced this incredible skill to set up a try for Wakefield Trinity in their victory over Toulouse Olympique in the Betfred Super League.

Adding to the Polynesian flavor of Hanley’s squad are six players from Tonga, a team once again tipped to do well at the World Cup after reaching the semi-finals in 2017.

The Tongan influence is also appropriate, with both sides wearing Tonga-inspired jerseys to raise money for the relief effort after the country’s devastating volcanic eruption and tsunami in January.

Tongan players in Hanley’s group are David Fifita, Kelepi Tanginoa (Wakefield), Samisoni Langi (Catalans), Tui Lolohea (Huddersfield), Manu Ma’u and Chris Satae (Hull FC).

Other players in the squad who could also feature in the World Cup are Hull FC’s Joe Lovodua (Fiji), Leeds Rhinos second line Rhyse Martin (Papua New Guinea) and Catalans captain Ben Garcia (France ).

Jake Connor has produced some memorable moments in a Hull FC shirt.

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Jake Connor has produced some memorable moments in a Hull FC shirt.

Jake Connor has produced some memorable moments in a Hull FC shirt.

“The door is always open for more players to work their way through to June – we know there will be injuries, as we’ve seen before, and that’s why we’ve named this great team , which we’ll scale back as we get closer to the game,” Hanley said.

“It is also important that fans and players recognize the framework we have been given to work in, in that no more than six players will be selected for the game at any one Super League club.

“Some people will raise their eyebrows and ask why we haven’t included any of St Helens’ brilliant players – for example, I would have liked to include Sione Mata’utia in our squad alongside his brother Peter.

“But we have to recognize that a lot of St Helens players are very important to Shaun Wane’s plans for England this year, so it was wiser for us to look to other Super League clubs.”

Combined Nations All Stars initial 30-man squad

Jake Connor, Kenny Edwards, Jai Field, David Fifita, Ben Garcia, Tom Johnstone, Sam Kasiano, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Tim Lafai, Samisoni Langi, Ricky Leutele, Danny Levi, Kane Linnett, Mason Lino, Tui Lolohea, Joe Lovodua, Jake Mamo, Rhys Martin, Peter Mata’utia, Manu Ma’u, Mitchell Pearce, Matt Prior, Ligi Sao, Chris Satae, Ken Sio, Kelepi Tanginoa, Zane Tetevano, Carlos Tuimavave, Luke Yates.

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