England head coach Wane to miss France Test

Shaun Wane looks towards the camera
Shaun Wane has been England head coach since February 2020 [Getty Images]

France v England Test double-header

Venue: Stade Ernest-Wallon, Toulouse Date: Saturday, 29 June Kick-off: 14:30 BST (women), 17:00 BST (men)

England men's head coach Shaun Wane will miss Saturday's Test against France in Toulouse as he recovers from an ankle operation.

Assistant Andy Last will lead a 19-man squad in the absence of Wane, who had surgery on Tuesday and had to miss a training get-together in Wigan on Wednesday.

Hull KR hooker Jez Litten will also miss the Test, having withdrawn from the squad because of illness.

Last said: "We've had a bit of a different build-up to this week's Test match with Shaun having to leave camp, but the players have really stepped up and it really has been business as usual."

A new-look squad includes five players earning their first England call-ups.

St Helens prop George Delaney is joined by Castleford Tigers centre Sam Wood, Wigan Warriors hooker Brad O'Neill, Hull KR loose forward Elliot Minchella, Huddersfield Giants forward Oliver Wilson and Leeds Rhinos forward James McDonnell.

The Test is part of a double-header, with the women's team also taking on France at Stade Ernest-Wallon, in a celebration to mark 90 years of French rugby league.

Last added: "This is an exciting squad and it’s always great to be able to reward players with their first international caps - all very deserving of wearing the England shirt.

"It's a big occasion for the French with it being their 90th anniversary and we are under no illusions they will come out strong in Toulouse on Saturday."

After Saturday's contest, England's men will face a two-Test series against Samoa, with the first match at Wigan's Brick Community Stadium - formerly DW Stadium - on Sunday, 27 October, and the second at AMT Headingley in Leeds on Saturday, 2 November (both 14:30 GMT).

Revised England squad: Ben Currie (Warrington Wolves), George Delaney (St Helens), Tyler Dupree (Wigan Warriors), Ash Handley (Leeds Rhinos), James Harrison (Warrington Wolves), Tom Johnstone (Catalans Dragons), Matty Lees (St Helens), Mikey Lewis (Hull KR), James McDonnell (Leeds Rhinos), Elliot Minchella (Hull KR), Harry Newman (Leeds Rhinos), Matty Nicholson (Warrington Wolves), Brad O’Neill, Harry Smith, Luke Thompson (all Wigan Warriors), Jack Welsby (St Helens), George Williams (Warrington Wolves), Oliver Wilson (Huddersfield Giants), Sam Wood (Castleford Tigers).