Heaton to lead England’s Lionhearts

DEWSBURY Celtic head coach Paul Heaton has gained international recognition by being appointed as coach to the England Lionhearts.

The team consists of players from throughout the Summer Conference, not just in Celtic’s national league but areas such as the Southern and Midlands Conferences.

Heaton will attend a selection day at Derby on May 30 when the various areas will send players they feel are worth consideration. The England team will then be finalised for matches against Scotland, Ireland and Wales.

Heaton remarked: “It’s good to be recognised, it’s the first step and I hope to go much further.

“I always feel I didn’t achieve all my ambitions as a player and I want to make progress as a coach and go as far as possible. Hopefully if people see how I conduct myself I might get a chance in the professional ranks.

“I realise I haven’t figured as a professional player but neither has Rob Powell at Harlequins and he’s doing pretty well.

“I’m really looking forward to it, the only drawback is that it’s a big commitment and affects your family. Unfortunately that’s often the case in rugby league.”