English rugby league legends Adrian Morley and Garry Schofield have tipped more of their countrymen to head Down Under to play in the NRL, following the success of Canberra’s UK quartet.
Schofield spent three seasons with the Balmain Tigers from 1985 to 1987, scoring a stunning 28 tries in just 47 games.
He helped the Tigers win the Amco Cup during his spell with the club and was the equal top try-scorer in the Winfield Cup in 1986.
The five-eighth believes the Australian coaches have to take some credit for allowing their English recruits to play their natural games and not stifling them.
“The coaches out there let them express themselves,” he said.
“John Bateman is an absolute freak and he’s being allowed to play like John Bateman can play. The Australian coaches have to take credit because they haven’t taken away the ability and that talent, and they’ve given them a free role.
Schofield expects more of England’s elite players to try their hand in the NRL, with the money on offer and the chance to pit themselves against the best in the world.
England Test internationals Jermaine McGillvary and Alex Walmsley have knocked back offers in the past, while Wayne Bennett is a noted admirer of St Helens prop Luke Thompson.
Souths boss Shane Richardson recently revealed the appeal of Thompson, Warrington hooker Daryl Clark and Leeds centre Harry Newman.
“Alex Walmsley would do well out there,” Schofield said.
“So would Luke Thompson. Having more English players playing in the NRL would only help the national team as they are playing at a high intensity week-in-week-out.”
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