McNamara has healthy squad for Exiles Test

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The Independent Online

The England coach, Steve McNamara, has reported a clean bill of health for Saturday's International Origin Test against the Exiles at Langtree Park.

Thirteen members of McNamara's 21-strong squad arrived at the team's Loughborough training camp yesterday injury free after the weekend's Super League matches. The Rugby Football League said that there had been no referrals from their match-review panel.

A five-strong Wigan contingent will link up with the squad after returning from their match against the Catalan Dragons in Montpellier and McNamara will be keeping his fingers crossed that Huddersfield's Danny Brough, Eorl Crabtree and Leroy Cudjoe feel no ill effects from their game against Hull KR at the Galpharm Stadium last night.

"All the players, with the exception of the Huddersfield boys, have come through without any problems from the weekend's matches," said McNamara, who will name his team to face a side drawn from Super League's foreign players on Thursday. "It is pleasing that we have a healthy group throughout the week and we can select from a full-strength squad."

The Warrington second-rower Ben Westwood, who was omitted from McNamara's squad before going on to play for his club against Leeds on Friday night, explained via Twitter that he is to undergo a hernia operation that will sideline him for a fortnight.

The former St Helens coach Daniel Anderson will coach the Exiles. With doubts over the Warrington hooker Michael Monaghan and Huddersfield forward Luke O'Donnell, who have not played for more than a month, and the Dragons forwards Lopini Paea and Louis Anderson, who were hurt in the defeat by Wigan, Anderson's 18-man squad could virtually select itself.

The Hull hooker Danny Houghton has withdrawn from the England Knights squad to play Ireland on Saturday, for family reasons. The St Helens half-back Jonny Lomax is a doubt for the match, which will also be played at Langtree Park, with a shoulder injury.