GEORGE Williams hopes to make even more of a noise to show England boss Shaun Wane he is getting better.
The former Wigan ace wowed in the NRL at Canberra Raiders last year, but the national chief was not overly impressed.
Wane admitted he could not understand some of the adulation that came Williams’ way.
But after speaking to him, the 26-year-old, who moved to scrum half from stand-off, hopes to show his improvement ahead of this year’s World Cup, with both actions and words.
He said: “I spoke to Shaun last week. I know him really well. He gave me my Wigan debut and I worked with him for five or six years.
“He’s very critical but I know he wants the best from me, he wants me to keep getting better and better.
“The big thing I can improve is my leadership. Since I’ve come to Canberra I’ve played a bit of a different role than at Wigan.
“Number seven has to be a bit more vocal and as last year went on I got better at it. Now I’ve just got to improve again.
“I feel like I’ve earned the respect now, so hopefully I can have a bit more of a voice.”
Williams’ preparations step up when Canberra have their pre-season trial match against Sydney Roosters on Saturday.
Playing would be a bit more normality after being unable to return home, meaning his first Christmas away.
Luckily, though, club boss Ricky Stuart stepped up for him and English clubmates Josh Hodgson, Elliott Whitehead, Ryan Sutton and Harry Rushton.
Williams added: “Life in Australia’s been a lot different. We had a lockdown for six weeks or so but my family’s been in lockdown for pretty much 12 months, they’ve not got any of their normal life back.
“It was strange not being at home for Christmas, it was my first one ever away, so it was a little bit different.
“Luckily, though, Ricky had a few of the English boys around at his house for Christmas dinner.”
Meanwhile, rugby league bosses are hoping for a crowd of up to 50,000 at the Challenge Cup final.
But much of those hopes are pinned on what happens with football’s Euros at Wembley.
And it is believed budgets have been provisionally drawn up on about half that figure.
Last season’s showpiece between Leeds and Salford was played behind closed doors but the belief is at least some fans will be allowed in by the July 17 date of the final.
Both the Carabao Cup and FA Cup finals are thought to be lined up to be test events and bosses hope to have 27,000 supporters at the seven Euro 2020 games Wembley is hosting.
That appears to be the figure rugby league chiefs are working on but insiders say there is hope successful trials and the vaccine rollout could see that rise.
50,000 remains just over half the capacity of Wembley and that was the attendance in 2018 when Catalans dragons defeated Warrington.
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