Ex-Wigan Warriors Sam Tomkins & Tom Davies drive from France to play for England

Coach Shaun Wane has praised the commitment of Sam Tomkins, who took on a 1,000-mile solo car journey from the south of France rather than catch a flight which would have meant having to go into quarantine.

Tuesday, 22nd June 2021, 3:39 pm
Sam Tomkins drove the 1,000 miles back from Perpignan alone
Sam Tomkins drove the 1,000 miles back from Perpignan alone

Tomkins' team-mate Tom Davies, who is set to win his first cap on Friday, also drove to England but had the company of his girlfriend.

"They took their time and had rests when they needed to," Wane said. "It's a great effort.

"You look at what Sam has done in his career and to jump in his car and drive here to play for England shows how much it means to him."

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Wane has welcomed the selection of England players Jake Connor and Jermaine McGillvary in the Combined Nations All Stars squad for Friday's mid-season game at Warrington.

Wane ignored the claims of Hull full-back Connor, preferring to go with Catalans Dragons' Tomkins for the number one shirt, and he left out Huddersfield winger McGillvary when he trimmed his squad to 19.

Both players have now been picked up by All Stars coach Tim Sheens, who with the blessing of Wane, has also selected Leeds hooker Kruise Leeming, who was also part of his initial plans.

It was already known that Wigan's Australia-born half-back Jackson Hastings, who qualifies for England through his grandmother and played for Great Britain in 2019, would be co-captain of the All Stars.

Wane, who put his England squad through their paces at Salford today, says he liaised with Sheens over the make-up of the All Stars line-up.

"He asked me if it was OK for them to play against us and I said it was fine," Wane said touchside at the end of the training session at the AJ Bell Stadium.

"It gives me another chance to watch them. Jermaine is a class player and it gives me another chance in a tough game to see how he goes."

McGillvary is one of five Huddersfield players in the 19-man All Stars squad but there are no representatives from champions St Helens even though they have no game this weekend.