Ireland Head Coach Mark Aston has today announced a 29 man train on squad for the 2014 Rugby League European Championship during which the Wolfhounds will face France, Scotland and Wales.
The squad includes eight of 2013 Rugby League World Cup squad in the form of Bob Beswick, Luke Ambler, Stuart Littler, Matty Hadden, Josh Toole, Colton Roche, Danny Bridge and Apirana Pewhairangi.
Also included in the panel are seven members of the Ireland Amateur team who won the Celtic Nations Cup against Scotland and Wales in August of this year.
From the domestic competition Hadden is joined by Brendan Guilfoyle, Lemeki Vaipulu, Wayne Kelly, Mikey Russell, and Casey Dunne. While former Treaty City Titans forward Graham O’Keeffe has also received the nod from Aston.
Meanwhile St Helen’s fullback Shannon McDonnell could make his long awaited debut for Ireland having missed out on both the 2008 and 2013 World Cups through injury.
Speaking on the announcement Aston said “I am delighted that we have eight of the world cup panel returning for 2014 and that we have been able to add a number of new players into the system.”
“The fixtures against France, Scotland and Wales are always exciting fixtures and I am sure that with the squads which have been announced this will be no different in 2014.”
Ireland will host France in their first game in Tallaght Stadium on the 18th of Octoberbefore the visit of Scotland on the 25th. They will then face Wales in Wrexham on the 2ndof November in the final game of the Championships.
Ireland Train On Squad:
Name Club Position Caps
Matty Hadden Antrim Eels Prop 2
Casey Dunne Athboy Longhorns Wing 0
Michael Russell Barnhall Butchers Hooker 0
Sean Hesketh Batley Bulldogs Prop 7
Wayne Kelly Belfast Met Scholars Hooker 0
Hayden Peacock Carcassone Second Row 0
Jobe Murphy Dewsbury Rams Second Row 0
Luke Ambler Halifax RLFC Prop 11
Callum Casey Halifax RLFC Loose Forward 4
Elliot Cosgrove Keighley Cougars Wing 5
Robbie Mulhern Leeds Rhinos Prop 0
Stuart Littler Leigh Centurions Centre 17
Michael Platt Leigh Centurions Centre 5
Bob Beswick Leigh Centurions Hooker 18
Gregg McNally Leigh Centurions Fullback 7
Josh Toole North Sydney Bears Centre 3
Graham O’Keeffe Oxford RLFC Centre 0
Callum Mulkeen Oxford RLFC Centre 0
Apirana Pewhairangi Parramatta Eels Stand Off 2
Sean Casey Rochdale Hornets Scrum Half 0
Shannon McDonnell St Helens RLFC Fullback 0
Lemeki Vaipulu Treaty City Titans Second Row 1
Brendan Guilfoyle Treaty City Titans Prop 2
James Toole Tweed Heads Seagulls Stand Off 0
Will Hope Unattached Second Row 0
Danny Bridge Warrington Wolves Second Row 1
Brad Hargreaves Wign St Patricks Wing 0
Pat Smith York City Knights Scrum Half 1
Colton Roche York City Knights Prop 2