McNamara gives England chance to gel
Dave Hadfield was a schoolboy convert to rugby league, the game which, one way or another, has dominated his life ever since. After working for newspapers in Shropshire and Blackpool (where he covered the fortunes of Blackpool Borough) he travelled the world, working mainly in Hong Kong and Sydney. He became The Independent's rugby league man in 1990 and has written five books on the game and broadcast extensively for Sky and the BBC. Dave played his last game at the age of 53 and would have set up a try if anyone could have been bothered supporting his break. When not writing about the sport, he now limits himself to a bit of tick and pass with his local club, the Bolton Mets. Family includes supporters - of varying degrees of dedication - of Salford, Wigan, Sheffield Eagles and St George Illawarra.
Thursday 27 October 2011
Steve McNamara has resisted the temptation to make any changes in England's team to face Wales in their Four Nations opener on Saturday.
McNamara has named exactly the same 17 who won in France last Friday, despite some qualms about an uneven performance.
"It's an opportunity for that group of players to rectify some of the errors we made in the game with France, bringing in some consistency," he said yesterday. "There were some great signs in our play last week and we are looking for our key partnerships to gel and prosper. We feel Wales will be a step up from France."
Wales have called up the second-rower Geraint Davies as the replacement for Gareth Thomas, who suddenly announced his retirement on Tuesday. Davies has been without a club since completing his contract with the French side Limoux in June.
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