Sam Tomkins confident that England will pull-off 'something special' as they prepare for Rugby League World Cup

The former Wigan Warriors full-back, who has announced he has joined NRL side New Zealand Warriors, believes this is the most talented England squad he has been a part of

England are in the best possible shape to make an impact in the World Cup, according to full-back Sam Tomkins.

With the tournament kick-off just 11 days away, national coach Steve McNamara was on Tuesday wrapping up the squad's high-altitude training camp in South Africa and Tomkins hailed it as a tremendous success.

"Everyone is enjoying it," the 2012 Man of Steel said. "Getting a bit of sun on our backs is nice.

"But the training has been intense and I think everyone has got a lot from it.

"The facilities here are world class and I think we're very fortunate. We've everything we need, this is the best preparation we could possibly have."

McNamara will finalise his side's preparations for their opening group game with favourites Australia, who are due to arrive in Manchester on Tuesday morning, with a warm-up game against Italy at Salford on Saturday.

He will cast his eye over all but two members of his 24-strong squad - the suspended Ben Westwood and injured Sean O'Loughlin are the only absentees - and Tomkins says he has never known such competition for places.

"It's definitely the most competitive I've ever seen," he said. "Every position is up for grabs and you can see the intensity picking up as the camp draws to a close.

"This is probably the best England team I've been involved in. We've got bags of potential and, if everyone can perform to their potential, I think we can do something special.

"The preparation over the last few years has been building up to the World Cup, with the England Knights and the ETS (elite training squad), and everything has clicked into place to get us into the best possible shape.

"To win the World Cup would mean absolutely everything to me. I've been lucky enough to win trophies with Wigan but I would certainly swap them to win the World Cup."

Tomkins played alongside older brother Joel for England in the 2010 Four Nations Series and he is hoping to be on the same pitch as younger sibling Logan at Salford on Saturday.

Sam is likely to get some game time against Italy while Logan has been called into the England Knights squad for the friendly with Samoa, which will be played as a curtain raiser.

"I'm over the moon with Logan's selection," said Sam. "He's worked really hard this year and played quite a number of games so to get this call-up for the Knights is huge for him.

"He's still very young and he's only going to get better. For him to hopefully get a taste of it this week will put him in good stead for the future."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee