Mark Percival to make Four Nations debut against Scotland

Saints Mark Percival will make his Four Nations debut against Scotland on Saturday
Saints Mark Percival will make his Four Nations debut against Scotland on Saturday
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Mark Percival is in line to make his Four Nations debut against Scotland at the at Ricoh Arena, Coventry, on Saturday.

The 22-year-old St Helens centre, who featured in the friendly fixture against France a couple of weeks ago, is in coach Wayne Bennett’s initial 19-man squad along side his club colleague Jonny Lomax

This will be the first time these two nations have met in a senior Test as international Rugby League makes its debut at the Ricoh Arena since it opened back in 2005.

Bennett also confirmed that former Saints prop James Graham will be rested while he recovers from a minor knee injury and expects to see him back in contention to play against Australia next week.

“We’re not going to make too many changes but we also want to make sure most players in the squad get game time,” said Bennett.

“The New Zealand game has gone now. We’ve reviewed it, talked about it and now back out on the field to get things right for Scotland on Saturday.

“We won’t be reading too much into Scotland’s game against Australia, they’re a good side with plenty of talent from Super League and the NRL in there. From what I saw, I thought they had a go last Friday and scored some decent tries.

“Just like every game we go into, we’re focused on our job and what needs to happen to come out on top.

“The boys are excited to play in Coventry at the Ricoh Arena and grow the game in the UK. I’ve heard it’s a fantastic facility and we’re looking forward to seeing all of the fans again.”

On the inclusion of George Williams in the squad, Bennett added: “I saw George play in the Super League Grand Final a few weeks ago and he’s a quality player. He’ll definitely be playing this weekend.

“He’s been working hard in training with the players and showing the coaching staff what he can do and what he’s capable of.”

England 19-man squad (professional club and community club in brackets):

John Bateman (Wigan Warriors, Bradford Dudley Hill)

George Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)

Sam Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)

Thomas Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)

Daryl Clark (Warrington Wolves, Fryston Warriors)

Mike Cooper (Warrington Wolves/St George-Illwarra Dragons, Latchford Albion)

Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)

Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers, Middleton Marauders)

Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos, Oulton Raiders)

Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves, New Spring Lions)

Josh Hodgson (Canberra Raiders, East Hull)

Jonny Lomax (St Helens, Orrell St James)

Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield Giants, Deighton Juniors)

Mark Percival (St Helens, Halton Farnworth Hornets)

Dan Sarginson (Wigan Warriors / Gold Coast Titans, Hemel Stags)

Scott Taylor (Hull FC, Skirlaugh)

Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos, Latchford Albion)

Elliott Whitehead (Canberra Raiders, West Bowling)

George Williams (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)

The double-header in Coventry - England v Scotland (5.30pm) and Australia v New Zealand (8pm) - is being broadcast live on BBC Two from 5.00pm this Saturday.

You can also listen to full match commentary on BBC 5 Live Extra from 5pm.