Man of Steel Title Awarded to Chase
Beating James Roby (St. Helens) and Sam Tomkins (Wigan) for the honor, Rangi Chase has earned the ‘Man of Steel’ title. The winner was decided by the players of the Engage Super League. The playmaker, who is currently with Castleford, will join his rivals as part of England’s Four Nations Rugby squad.
A year ago, Chase played against England as a member of New Zealand’s team, the Maoris. This year, he has given his allegiance to his adopted country and will be a part of their team.
Mc Namara’s Team
Steve McNamara, England’s coach, has already chosen Danny Brough (Huddersfield), who played for the Scotland side in the World Cup in 2008, to be on his squad. He has also chosen Australian players, Jack Reed, Chris Heighington and Gareth Widdop, to be a part of the team. This makes the squad a mix of international players.
But McNamara’s biggest risk so far is the inclusion of Chase. The New Zealander, aged 25, qualifies for the team under the laws of residency. He has worked and resided in the UK for the required period of three years. His team-switch has yet to cleared by the Rugby League International Federation. Chase has just signed a contract with the Tigers, which extends till 2015. Fans of the game hope he will be allowed to play in Avignon, against France on the 21st of October.
Chase said that he gave the matter – of playing for England – a lot of consideration when he became eligible to be a part of the team. He then approached Mc Namara and asked to play for the country as he considered it his home and where he wants to settle down permanently.
The awards ceremony in Manchester saw Trent Robinson of the Catalans Dragons being honored as Coach of the Year. Jonny Lomax of St. Helens won the Young Player award. The Catalan Dragons also won Club of the Year.
Robert Purdham (Harlequins and the London Broncos) and Sean Long (Hull FC, Wigan and St Helens) won awards for their outstanding contributions. Harry Jepson won the Lifetime Achievement award.
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