Number no clue to Tomkins' future role

Joel Tomkins is not paying any attention to the number emblazoned across his kit and training gear.

Saturday, 19th November 2016, 5:50 am
Updated Monday, 21st November 2016, 1:26 pm
Joel Tomkins finished this season operating in the middle

The 29-year-old has been handed the No.11 shirt for 2017, ahead of England forward John Bateman (14).

Tomkins made his name as a second-rower and played in that role after returning from a spell in rugby union.

But his last action was operating in the middle as he battled knee problems, which eventually cut short his season as he needed surgery.

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He is now back into rehab and is unsure what position his future lies in.

“It’s just a number, I suppose,” he said. “I don’t know where I’ll play, I’ll see when I start running how the knees are and what my lateral movement is like.

“Wherever Waney wants to play me in the pack I’ll be happy – but I think my centre days are over!

“Faz (Liam Farrell) and Batty are both quality back rowers who did well for England, Lockers is at loose forward and we’ve got a host of front-rowers.

“So wherever I play there’s strong competition for places.

“But it’s the start of pre-season and everyone is on a level playing field.

“It’s for the players to force their way into the side.”