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Rivers-Shooting clash lights up Port Harcourt


Shawcross aiming for England cap

Stoke City captain Ryan Shawcross is determined to win his first international cap with England in their upcoming World Cup qualifiers after failing to do so last time around.

• Pulis delighted at Shawcross call-up

Shawcross, 25, was first called up to the squad 19 months ago by Fabio Capello for the friendly with Egypt, only to be an unused substitute.

But Roy Hodgson has rewarded the defender for an excellent start to the season at his club with a call-up for the upcoming fixtures against Poland and San Marino.

The former Manchester United man does not want to be making up the numbers again and is hopeful of pushing for a debut appearance.

"I'm delighted to be called up and I'm just looking forward to getting there and hopefully proving I'm good enough to be around the squad and to continue being in the squad in the future," Shawcross said.

"It's up to me to play well and see what happens. After that you never know."

Shawcross has benefited from John Terry's international retirement and Hodgson effectively calling an end to Rio Ferdinand's international career.

He has been in such form this season that Sir Alex Ferguson is rumoured to be keeping a close watch on the central defender he sold to Tony Pulis for £1.5 million in January 2008.

After another impressive performance in the 0-0 draw against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, Shawcross is just happy for the opportunity to represent a club he feels has been overlooked at international level with England of late.

"In the past Stoke have had some great players play for England. They have not had so many recently. Now the likes of me and Peter Crouch are pushing hard to get into that squad," he said.


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