TWO BOYS from Saddleworth has been starring for the England under-16’s Rugby League team.
Jack Etchells, from Moorside, and Diggle’s Isaac Noi, both members of Wigan Warriors’ Academy, recently featured in two tests against France and one further international against Wales.
Jack, who is still only 15, is a winger who also plays for Oldham St Anne’s while Isaac, a centre, also stars for Wigan side Ince Rose Bridge.
A pupil at Bluecoat, Jack also attended Delph Primary and was more renowned as a footballer until 18 months ago.
Jack was a striker for Boundary Park Juniors and scored 78 goals in one season in the Tameside League, exploits which earned trials with Oldham Athletic and a spell at Rochdale’s Centre of Excellence.
He was spotted by Wigan Warriors while playing his first game of RL and, after they watched him a number of other times, he was offered a place at their Academy and within a couple of months of taking up the sport was playing for Lancashire.
Sixteen-year-old Isaac is a pupil at Hulme Grammar and becomes the second international sportsman in his family as father Eric boxed for England.
He has been played both codes of rugby – union for Rochdale and league for Oldham St Anne’s and Rochdale Mayfield and current club Ince Rose Bridge.
Isaac is also an accomplished sprinter, a Greater Manchester schools’ 100m champion and member of Sale Harriers.