Four Dewsbury-Born rugby league players are set to be thrown into the international spotlight on Saturday when England meet Scotland in the Four Nations at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena.
South Sydney Rabbitohs superstar Sam Burgess will lead England out in his 17th international and his second as his country’s captain, having led them for the first time in last Saturday’s Four Nations opener against New Zealand in front of a sell out crowd at Huddersfield.
Brothers Tom and George were on the bench last week and are also likely to be selected in the England squad, who are looking to bounce back from their agonising 17-16 defeat against the Kiwis.
Leading out the Bravehearts will be Scotland captain and former Thornhill Trojans player Danny Brough, who is set to become his nation’s most capped rugby league player during the competition.
Burgess became the first Dewsbury-born player since Mick Stephenson to lead the national side out against the Kiwis and admitted he was brimming with pride.
Burgess said: “At Dewsbury Moor there is an honours board as you go in, with players who have gone on to represent Super League clubs and I always dreamed of being put onto that board, representing a Super League club – never mind captaining my country.
“You do not think that is going to ever happen, but to be given the captaincy is a real honour and something I do with pride and will give it everything.”
Saturday will be the first rugby league international between England and Scotland and takes on added significance after both sides lost their opening games.
Scotland suffered a 54-12 defeat to Australia at Hull KR last Friday — a match which saw Brough land two goals — and the Bravehearts know that producing a shock win in Coventry would all but end England’s hopes of reaching the Four Nations final at Anfield later this month.
Kiwi half-back Shaun Johnson broke England hearts with a late winning drop goal last Saturday and the hosts know only victory against the Scots will maintain their hopes of reaching the final.
Coventry’s Ricoh Arena hosts a double header on Saturday with England v Scotland kicking off at 5.30pm followed by the mouth-watering clash between Australia and New Zealand at 8pm.
Tickets are available by visiting www.rugby-league.com/tickets or on 0844 856 1113.