England are set to take on an all-stars team drawn from leading overseas players based in Engage Super League this summer.

The fixture, which will replace the annual mid-season international against France on the second weekend of June, has been agreed by the clubs but has yet to be ratified.

Details have still to be released but, speaking at a briefing at the Rugby Football League’s Leeds headquarters today, England head coach Steve McNamara revealed the fixture will be part of a 2011 training programme in which he will be given unprecedented access to the elite players.

“The concept has been agreed with the clubs and details will be released in due course,” he said.

McNamara believes an all-stars team will provide a sterner test than the French, who were hammered 60-6 at Leigh last June and may now turn to Wales for opposition, in the build-up to the 2011 Gillette Four Nations Series.

The concept, which was pushed by McNamara’s predecessor Tony Smith, will rekindle memories of the Other Nationalities team which played around 30 times between 1904 and 1975 with regular fixtures against England, Wales and France.

Some of the most successful overseas players in Super League, including the past two Men of Steel - Wigan Warriors’ goalkicking wing Pat Richards and Warrington Wolves’ new signing Brett Hodgson - have already voiced their support for the idea.

They could be joined by some of the new Australian signings who are due to play in England this season, such as Willie Mason (Hull KR), Ryan Hoffman (Wigan) and Joel Monaghan (Warrington).

McNamara, now in his first full year as national head coach, held a get-together with his 2010 England touring party earlier this week and has been promised three two-day camps with the elite training squad during the season.

He will also have similar access to an England Knights squad, which will be launched this year to help bridge the gap between the England academy squad and the national team.

The Knights, which will be formed along the lines of the England Lions and Saxons in cricket and rugby union, will essentially be a development squad, although there will be no age limit, and they are not guaranteed to play any matches.

“It will be a vehicle for players with potential to push on for the 2013 World Cup,” said McNamara, who will announce both a Knights squad and an enlarged elite training squad on Monday, February 28.

“We are building an England culture so that there is less need for education when players come into the elite training squad.

“We are going to get more access to players and I have got to thank clubs for their support. The 2011 campaign starts now.”

McNamara is hoping the new initiatives will help deter youngsters like Kyle Eastmond from switching codes and he revealed today that he has already held talks with the St Helens half-back.

Eastmond, who missed the 2010 Four Nations Series through injury, is out of contract with his club at the end of the new season and recently had informal discussions with Bath.

“We have to work very hard to make sure our players are happy and there is a good future for them in rugby league,” said McNamara.

Other Nationalities Results:

Date
Home Team
Score
Away Team
Score
Location
5 April 1904
England
3
Other Nationalities
9
Wigan
2 January 1905
England
26
Other Nationalities
11
Bradford
1 January 1906
England
3
Other Nationalities
3
Wigan
5 February 1921
England
33
Other Nationalities
16
Workington
15 October 1924
England
17
Other Nationalities
23
Leeds
4 February 1926
England
37
Other Nationalities
11
Whitehaven
20 March 1929
England
27
Other Nationalities
20
Leeds
7 April 1930
England
19
Other Nationalities
35
Halifax
1 October 1930
England
31
Other Nationalities
18
St Helens
30 March 1933
England
34
Other Nationalities
27
Workington
19 September 1949
England
7
Other Nationalities
13
Workington
22 October 1949
Wales
5
Other Nationalities
6
Abertillery
10 January 1950
France
8
Other Nationalities
3
Marseille
10 December 1950
France
16
Other Nationalities
3
Bordeaux
31 March 1951
Wales
21
Other Nationalities
27
Swansea
11 April 1951
England
10
Other Nationalities
35
Wigan
3 November 1951
Other Nationalities
17
France
14
Hull
1 December 1951
Wales
11
Other Nationalities
22
Abertillery
23 April 1952
England
31
Other Nationalities
18
Wigan
18 October 1952
England
12
Other Nationalities
31
Huddersfield
23 November 1952
France
10
Other Nationalities
29
Marseille
15 April 1953
Other Nationalities
16
Wales
18
Warrington
7 October 1953
Other Nationalities
30
Wales
5
Bradford
18 October 1953
France
15
Other Nationalities
10
Bordeaux
28 November 1953
England
30
Other Nationalities
22
Wigan
12 September 1955
England
33
Other Nationalities
16
Wigan
19 October 1955
France
19
Other Nationalities
32
Leigh
14 September 1974
Lancashire
14
Other Nationalities
13
Salford
25 November 1975
Lancashire
36
Other Nationalities
7
St Helens