Published: 26 November, 2019 - 11:30 am

England Universities Rugby League have announced the players who will be aiming to make the final cut to represent their region on Saturday 30th November, when the University inter-regional games take place – and York City Knights partner club York St John University RL are well represented.

YSJ RL are currently undefeated in their BUCS season so far, and that good form has been recognised with no less than seven players getting a call up.

Charlie Frost, Ryan Long, Daniel Ramsey, James Smith, Lewis Swan, Benjamin Taylor and team captain Stephen Gibbs will all get the opportunity to earn representative honours.

Gibbs said: “‘Im excited for all the York St John boys who’ve made extra effort to travel to Newcastle on weekends and to get selected in this provisional squad, they should be proud

“It also shows just how far we’ve come – not only as individuals, but as a club – last year we were struggling to scrape a squad together as Christmas approached, and now to have seven players in with a chance of representative honours, that to me is massive.”

The YSJ captain, who is also currently midway through a pre-season trial with York City Knights, added: “I’m loving my time doing pre-season with the Knights. It’s as tough as you’d expect, but I’ve never tested myself a such at high level before and I’m really trying to embrace the challenge.

Gibbs is hoping to follow the path of current Knights first team stars Will Jubb, Jason Bass and Marcus Stock, who have all represented England Universities while studying in recent years:

“I’ve a few bits I need to work on but I’ll be putting my all in to try prove myself.”

YSJ Head Coach & Knights Team Manager Will Leatt was pleased to see a number of his rapidly improving team recognised.

He said: “I’m delighted that 7 of our players have been selected for the North East Area representative team. It’s a great reward for their hard work so far this season and recognition of their quality. I wish them the absolute best.”

The regional sides are the first rung on the England Universities ladder, with players selected for the region in which they are studying, with the final squads of 20 being finalised later this week.

Following the inter-regional games, players are selected for their Origin side, with Midlands, South East and South West aligning to the South and North West, North East and Yorkshire aligning to the North, with the University Origin Match, which takes place at Loughborough University on Saturday 1st February 2020, leading to the final England squad being selected.

This year all games take place on Saturday 30th November at the University of Birmingham’s Bournbrook Pitch as follows:

1pm – Midlands v South East

3pm – North East v South West

5pm – Yorkshire v North West

York St John RL are in action this Wednesday afternoon (27th November), looking to maintain their unbeaten season at home to Leeds Trinity Titans, kicking off at 1pm at YSJ’s Haxby Road campus (YO31 8TA). There is a café on site serving hot drinks and snacks so if you’re free, wrap up warm and come see some top quality local rugby league!