RUGBY LEAGUE: Davies returns

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The Independent Online
Wales will travel to Carcassonne to try to win the European Championship this weekend with two of their key players free to play after earlier complications, writes Dave Hadfield.

Jonathan Davies is set to lead the side as captain and stand-off after his wife gave birth to their third child on Tuesday night. Davies would have pulled out of the trip if the birth had been delayed or there had been any complications, but he now expects to be able to travel for Sunday's match.

Allan Bateman has overcome a different problem by getting time away from work in order to travel to France. He will now partner Iestyn Harris in the centre, with John Devereux likely to be on the right wing and Phil Ford dropping to a place among the four substitutes.

France have suffered a blow with the loss of their injured captain, Didier Cabestany. The Leeds scrum-half, Patrick Entat, resumes his role as captain of his country and Ezzedine Attia takes over from Cabestany in the second row. France also reshuffle their threequarter line by bringing in Claude Sirvent on the wing, and Patrick Torreilles is recalled at hooker.

The trio of outstanding players brought through the ranks by Leigh are reunited for the Great Britain Under-21 side's match against France in Albi on Saturday.

Scott Martin, still with Leigh, is joined by Paul Rowley and Simon Baldwin, now playing for Halifax, in the British pack.

The Rugby League is not to take any action over the incident when the Featherstone Rovers forward, Brendon Tuuta, was alleged to have struck an 11-year-old girl spectator at the end of a match at Workington.

The League's board of directors studied the video which showed Tuuta entering the players' tunnel, but did not see any evidence with which to charge him with any form of misconduct. The video has been forwarded to the police in Cumbria, who are still investigating.

WALES (v France, European Championship, Sunday, Carcassonne): P Atcheson (Wigan); J Devereux (Widnes), A Bateman, I Harris (both Warrington), A Sullivan (St Helens); J Davies (Warrington, capt), K Ellis (Workington); K Skerrett, M Hall (both Wigan), D Young (Salford), P Moriarty, M Perrett (both Halifax), R Eyres (Leeds). Substitutes: P Ford (Salford), N Cowie (Wigan), A Hadley (Widnes), R Phillips (Workington).

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