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Tomkins would relish Barbarians tie

Sam Tomkins would jump at the chance to play rugby union for the Barbarians again this year but insists he is not angling for a cross-code switch.

The Wigan and England full-back, whose older brother Joel Tomkins joined Saracens in November, made a guest appearance for the Barbarians against Australia at Twickenham at the end of last autumn's Four Nations Series, scoring their only try in a 60-11 defeat.

The 22-year-old said: "It was just an opportunity I felt I couldn't miss. It was the chance to play a different sport at a stadium like Twickenham. Not many people get the chance to play there. I'd bite their hand off to play again. It was a great week building up to it, just a completely different environment."

He added: "I didn't want to look back later in my career and think 'why didn't I just do that'. There was no reason not to.

"It was by no means trying to see what union's like. It wasn't a job interview or anything like that, like people said.

"It was purely a case of getting an opportunity to do something different and I'd certainly play again if I got offered the chance.

"Obviously we got battered and no one enjoys that but I got a taste for it and next time, if I got to play a different position, I could get more involved."

Tomkins, whose Twickenham outing on November 26 means he will have had the shortest close season of any Super League player, will have a run-out in Wigan's friendly against Salford at the City Reds' new stadium on Tuesday night.

Despite having had just eight weeks rest, last year's Man of Steel contender says he is ready to play again.

"It seems like a long time since I pulled a Wigan shirt on," he said. "I had a couple of weeks off and we were over in Florida in pre-season in December for a bit of light training. I've had a rest, the body feels good and I feel like I'm ready to get back into it."


From Belfast Telegraph