Noble confident despite injuries

Great Britain coach Brian Noble believes he has the right mix in his squad for the Tri-Nations Series against Australia and New Zealand.

Noble is missing several key players - including captain Paul Sculthorpe - because of injury, while former skipper Andrew Farrell has switched to union.

But he said: "We've got some really good players that are form players.

"I think the balance is right - we've got decent size, decent speed and decent dexterity with the ball."

Noble, whose side left yesterday for a four-day training camp in Spain, named a 24-man squad for the eagerly-anticipated tournament earlier this week.

But the coach's selection has been affected by a string of injuries, including most recently Leeds stand-off Danny McGuire, who is to undergo groin surgery after an injury-plagued campaign.

"Well, he's huge, he's a good player," added Noble. "But I think the halves that we've got in there are capable of putting something together for us as well.

"You don't want your best players missing in an international tournament, but we've had to cope with that over the years and it's another one we've got to cope with this year."

Noble will also be without Kris Radlinski and Sean Long because of long-term injuries - but Noble insists he will be concentrating on the players he has at his disposal rather than those missing.

He said: "They're not a focus - they can't afford to be - because you can't open a new can of Radlinskis, or Sculthorpes, or Longs. You've got to go with what you've got.

"If the current group prepare as well as the side did last year and give the same amount of sacrifice, then we'll be OK."

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