Kelly seasons Wales squad with veterans Ellis and Bateman

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The Independent Online

The veteran former internationals Kevin Ellis and Allan Bateman have been drafted into the Welsh squad for their three matches this autumn.

The ex-Warrington pair are both 38 and last played professional rugby league in the mid-Nineties before returning successfully to rugby union. But both have played this year for the Bridgend Blue Bulls, who won the RL Conference.

The Welsh coach, Neil Kelly, who named most of his squad earlier this week for games against Russia, England A and Australia, said: "There are a few youngsters and inexperienced players in the squad, and I wanted to temper that with some experience."

Kelly also added four young Welsh-based players after watching a Probables v Possibles trial match in Aberavon: Damien Hudd of Torfaen, Lenny Woodard of Bridgend, Jordan James of Sheffield and Aled James of Widnes. "I had only been planning to name a total of four, but I was so impressed with the standard that I have increased it to six," Kelly said.

Swinton have appointed their former coach and most celebrated player of the last 20 years, Les Holliday, as their director of rugby. Paul Kidd will take over as the head coach from Peter Roe, who recently turned down a new contract.

Leigh, whose Ricky Bibey and Paul Rowley face possible suspensions when they go before the League's disciplinary hearing next week following their dismissals in the National League One play-off, have cited Salford's Andy Coley over an incident in the same match.

A meeting of Super League clubs agreed to stick to their position in negotiations for a new television contract. Rugby League has turned down Sky's initial offer to continue televising Super League, but has struck a provisional deal for Challenge Cup and international coverage with the BBC.

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