England’s Scott Taylor primed for Scotland’s challenge in Four Nations


It has been quite a year for Scott Taylor. A dyed-in-the-wool Hull FC fan, Taylor capped his first season with the club by helping them win the Challenge Cup at Wembley for the first time.
Taylor’s dream 2016 did not end there. His impressive form throughout the year earned him a call-up to the England squad for this autumn’s internationals and the 25-year-old made his debut last month against France in Avignon.
Taylor was left out for the 17-16 defeat to New Zealand last Saturday in the opening round of the Four Nations – but following an injury to the vice-captain, James Graham, the prop has been included in the England side that faces Scotland in Coventryon Saturday.
With a likely winner-takes-all showdown coming against Australia at the London Stadium on 13 November, it is hard not to perceive the Scotland game as an open audition for Taylor to show he is worthy of a place against the Kangaroos. The forward, however, is refusing to look beyond the Bravehearts.
“If I got to play against Australia in London it would be unbelievable,” Taylor says. “But while I know that’s round the corner I honestly haven’t thought about it. I’ll be giving it my all and do nothing different to what’s got me into this position. If that’s enough and I do enough to play against Australia then that would be unbelievable, but it’s one step at a time at the minute.”
There was a feeling in some quarters that Taylor was unfortunate to miss out against the Kiwis after impressing on his debut, especially after a rave review from Wayne Bennett, the England coach. “He said I was tremendous,” Taylor says. “He said it was one of my best performances all season from what he’d seen. He said he was really happy with me but that I was unlucky against the Kiwis because he wanted to go with a bit more international experience, which I understood.”
With Graham sidelined due to a knee injury – he should return to face the Kangaroos – Taylor has the opportunity to take the frustration of missing out last week out on the Scots as the two sides meet at international level for the first time. “I’m not a good watcher. I was angry and passionate and wanted to be out there,” he says.
“As I was watching it I was getting angry and frustrated just like anyone really and I was devastated because I knew the boys had given it everything they had.”
England know only back-to-back victories over the next 10 days will secure a place in the final at Anfield and while they are heavy favourites to beat Scotland Taylor is refusing to write off a side heavily beaten by Australia on the opening weekend. “Scotland will come out flying and so will we. I’m expecting a competitive, fierce Test match that will be good to watch,” he says.
“We’ve not even spoken about racking up the points. You always want to win a game by as many as possible, so it is what it is. We know they’re coming to play, but we’ll be ready for them.”
For the second part of the double-header at the Ricoh Arena Johnathan Thurston returns for Australia to face New Zealand. The Golden Boot holder was among a number of key players left out last week. “I’m expecting it to be nice and tough,” he says. “We played them before we came over here and they got hold of me a couple of times and no doubt it won’t be any different.
“I might have to try and give them one back but I don’t think I’m big enough.”
England’s Scott Taylor primed for Scotland’s challenge in Four Nations England’s Scott Taylor primed for Scotland’s challenge in Four Nations Reviewed by Usa Tv on November 05, 2016 Rating: 5

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