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Brough and Ferguson switch to England disappoints Scots

Dale Ferguson and Danny Brough
Ferguson and Brough were named in England's training squads

Scotland Rugby League has expressed disappointment after captain Danny Brough and player of the year Dale Ferguson switched to England.

The Huddersfield Giants pair were seen as vital components of head coach Steve McCormack's side.

And board director Graeme Thompson said: "Danny had given his commitment to Scotland through to the 2013 World Cup in discussions with our head coach.

"However, he appears to have now changed his mind."

Half-back Brough, 28, and 22-year-old loose-forward Ferguson were both born in Yorkshire but previously chose to play for the Scots.

However, their Super League form led to Brough being called into Steve McNamara's England elite training squad last month while Ferguson was named in the England Knights development squad.

The 32-strong elite squad will form the nucleus of the national team ahead of the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, with the new Knights programme featuring 25 players who will supplement the pool.

Dale had made a significant impact in a short time since making his international debut with us last year

Scotland Rugby League board director Graeme Thompson

Thompson hopes that the defection of Brough and Ferguson will result in greater opportunities in the Scotland squad for emerging home-grown talent.

"This situation does mean that opportunity knocks for other players both this year and with the forthcoming World Cup in 2013," he said. "They will be our focus going forward.

"On the same day that Danny and Dale committed to England, David Scott from Easterhouse Panthers in Glasgow, signed for Hull KR to play for their Academy," he said.

"Added to the recent signing of David's Scotland Under-18s colleague and Easterhouse team-mate Chad McGlame by Hull FC, it is an encouraging sign of progress in our player pathway.

"We hope one day they too will be full Scotland internationalists."

Thompson, however, thanked both players for their efforts in Scotland colours.

"For Danny, this has been over a considerable period, from his debut in 2004 - before he had played in Super League - up to our game in France in October last year, including captaining Scotland at the 2008 World Cup.

"Dale had made a significant impact in a short time since making his international debut with us last year, which led to him being our player of the year."

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see also
McNamara selects England squads
28 Feb 11 |  Rugby League

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