Kallum Watkins ready to seize England chance he questioned would ever come again | The Sun

KALLUM Watkins is ready to throw it all in for England after getting a chance he thought may never come again.

And last night’s darts tournament among Shaun Wane’s players meant more than just chucking a few arrows at a wall.

Not much has changed since the Salford man’s last appearance for his country, 2017’s World Cup final – he has suffered two serious knee injuries, played in the NRL for Gold Coast Titans, come back and lived through the Covid-19 pandemic.

But he is back and likely to play in his familiar centre role against the Combined Nations All Stars after lining up in the back row for the Red Devils. Something he thought may not happen again.

Watkins said: “There were times I thought it may not come, especially last year after my latest knee injury.

“That was before the World Cup was postponed, so I thought if it had been that year and I’d not been able to play, that might have been it for me internationally.

“If anything, it gave me a boost when it did get put back. I thought, ‘I’ve still got a chance.’ I thought it had gone, so I had to make the most of it.

“That was when I first found out I had the injury, it can get you down. After that, I thought, ‘This is happening. This is what I need to do.’

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“A lot of learning and self-reflection was really good for me. or me. It’s been quite a story over the last few years but it’s great to be back.

“And this isn’t just for me. Getting back into the England set up is testament to the help and support Salford has given me. People there helped me a lot.”

Now Watkins, 31, is back, he has the chance to show his skills in a different arena – on the oche as players took part in a friendly competition.

But despite the laughing and joking, there was a serious message behind it as Wane’s preparations for the home tournament ramp up.

And winning will literally be in the details as Watkins added: “My darts are all right but we’re having a little bit of fun, which is good as it opens people up a lot.

“You can get too intense at times but this week is about enjoying each other’s company and that builds bonds with each other.

“It’s also about getting prepared for a game, which is going to be tough and a challenge that will help us prepare for the World Cup.

“There aren’t many opportunities to do that, so it’s been really enjoyable being part of it all and with Shaun, it’s about getting all the details right.

“It is all about the details, especially at the level we’re playing at. Players in the squad are extremely talented and know how to win but it’s about doing the details correctly and doing everything possible to get the best out of everybody and the team.

“Training sessions haven’t been too long but Shaun wants the intensity right, our skills to be right and for us to be on and it would be nice to be involved in the World Cup.

“To do that, I’ve got to impress tomorrow and gain the trust of my team-mates.”

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