Rugby League: Jackson in line for Test chance

Click to follow
The Independent Online
PAUL NEWLOVE and Martin Dermott are in danger of picking up the bill for Great Britain's defeat in the third Test against Australia. They have been named in the side to play Auckland tomorrow, a reliable sign that they are not in line to play in the first Test against New Zealand at Palmerston North on Sunday.

Dermott and Lee Jackson are engaged in a long-running tussle for the position of hooker; and both, in their different ways, have played well on the tour - but there is a feeling that Jackson has earned an opportunity with his efforts in mid-week games.

'Lee has played very consistently on this tour. There are only two Tests left and I am going to give him a chance,' Malcolm Reilly, the Great Britain coach, said.

The situation with the centres is more complicated. Newlove was one of Britain's more disappointing performers in Brisbane, but he could still salvage his Test place if he rediscovers his sparkle at Carlaw Park tomorrow.

Joe Lydon also gets a start in the centres and a chance to stake his claim. As expected, Dean Sampson will make his tour debut in the front row.

GREAT BRITAIN (v Auckland, tomorrow): Hampson; Hunte, Lydon, Newlove, Hallas; Ellis, Fox (capt); Harrison, Dermott, Sampson, Fairbank, M Jackson, McNamara. Substitutes: Aston, Devereux, Myers, Hulme.

AUCKLAND: D Macintosh; Patton, Elia, I Ropati, Campbell; K McIntosh, Friend (capt); Afoa, Malam, Pickering, Tatapu, Leota, Ramsay. Substitutes: Kini, Tuisamoa, Robarts, Lowrie.

NEW ZEALAND (v Great Britain, first Test, Palmerston North, Sunday): Ridge (Manly); Hoppe (Canberra), K Iro (Manly), Kemp (Newcastle), Blackmore (Castleford); Clark (Auckland), Freeman (Eastern Suburbs, Sydney, capt); Stuart (Canterbury, NZ), Mann (Warrington), Todd (Gold Coast), Hill (Canterbury, Aus), Pongia (Canterbury, NZ), Tuuta (Featherstone Rovers). Substitutes: Halligan (North Sydney), Kuiti (Wellington), T Ropati (St Helens), Woods (Wellington).