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Wright On Form For Australia

30 March 2016

Bailey Wright's Australia took a step closer to securing a place in the 2018 World Cup.

The North End defender played 90 minutes in both World Cup qualifiers during the international break, with the Socceroos emphatic winners on both occassions.

First up for the Aussies was a 7-0 win over Tajikistan in Adelaide on Thursday 24th March, before a 5-1 win over Harry Redknapp's Jordan side on Tuesday in Sydney.

The 23-year-old has been in impressive form the national side, and has started each of the last seven games for Ange Postecoglou's side and will be looking to maintain his place in the team for the future ahead of the tournament.

Those wins have booked the Aussies a spot in the next stage of World Cup qualifing, comfortably topping their qualifying group in the Asia section.

The next qualifying stage will begin in autumn, as Australia look to reach Russia 2018.

Should the Aussies qualify for the tournament and Wright be selected, it will be the defender's second World Cup campaign, after travelling with the national team to the 2014 World Cup.

Though he didn't make an appearance in Brazil, it was surely an experience that will only benefit Wright next time around.

Wright was an uncapped player when selected for the last World Cup, but he has since established himself in the national side, with his number of appearances in double figures.

Next up for Wright and his international teammates sees a much shorter trip for the North End man, as England host Australia in a friendly at Sunderland's Stadium of Light.

The game will be played on 27th May, as England finalise their preparations for the 2016 European Championships.

Before that though, it's back to league action for Wright, as he returns to training with PNE on Thursday ahead of a big game against Blackburn Rovers, with a sell out away following of 7,000.

North End take on Rovers on Saturday, with an early kick-off time of 12.30pm, and Wright will be hoping to get over any jetlag after his long trip in order to be fit for the match.

Also called up to their national side over the international break was Anders Lindegaard. The on-loan keeper was on the bench for Denmark's 1-0 defeat to Scotland in a friendly on Tuesday night.

Alan Browne was due to join up with the Republic of Ireland Under 21s squad for their European Championship qualifiers, and was also set to train with Martin O'Neill's senior squad for the first time.

The midfielder was forced to pull out of the squad though due to a hip flexor injury that has kept him out since PNE's 0-0 draw with Brighton at the beginning of March.

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