Scotland and Ireland have named their squads for the mid-season wheelchair Test match at Calderdale College, Halifax, on Saturday 18 June.
The clash will be the 15th meeting between the nations since 2012, with the most recent meeting being at the Celtic Cup in Wrexham in May, when Ireland were narrow 38-35 winners.
Scotland Wheelchair head coach Mark Roughsedge has made two changes from the group that travelled to Wrexham, Dave Anderson returns to the squad for the first time since the Test against Wales in October 2021 and Dan Grant also earns a spot and could make his first appearance for Scotland since September 2019. Ryan Mellon remains unavailable for selection due to his Army commitments.
It will be the Bravehearts’ last competitive fixture before their World Cup squad is chosen. “It’s great to welcome Dan and Dave back in the national performance squad,” said Roughsedge. “Dan has been in impressive form with his club, Gravesend and deserves to be back involved. We’re hoping that both will impress and fight to keep their places now that they’ve got them.
“The game against Ireland at the Celtic Cup was fantastic. We want to use this last match before we go into camp to really implement what we’ve learned. Some players maybe weren’t quite at their best in Wrexham but they’ve got a great opportunity to bounce back here.”
🤩 The mid-season international squads are starting to take shape and are jam-packed with stars!
— Rugby League World Cup 2021 (@RLWC2021) June 16, 2022
Ireland include three in-form Betfred Wheelchair Super League players, Phil Roberts of Wigan, Halifax Panthers’ Tom Martin and Toby Burton Carter from Warrington.
Damian McCabe, Ireland’s player/head coach noted: “Alongside a number of returnees from the recent Celtic Cup we welcome back Ken Maloney into the side after an absence of seven years. Also lining up we have Irish Paralympian James McCarthy making his Wheelchair Rugby League debut. This is a strong squad that gives us a number of options on the field. This will be a good first step into our World Cup preparation. We are expecting another tight match.”
Scotland Squad: Michael Mellon, Graeme Stewart, Cadyn Thomson, John Willans, (Dundee Dragons), Neil Johnston (Glasgow Rugby League), Dan Grant (Gravesend Dynamite), Paul Hartley, Pete Lauder (RAF), Callum Young (Warrington Wolves), Dave Anderson (West Wales Raiders)
Ireland Squad: Peter Johnston (Argonauts/North Wales Crusaders), Ken Maloney (Gravesend), Thomas Martin (Halifax), Stephen Palin Campbell (Sheffield), Damian McCabe, James McCarthy, Scott Robertson (unattached), Toby Burton Carter (Warrington), Phil Roberts (Wigan)