LEEDS Rhinos and Great Britain legend Barrie McDermott will be a guest of honour at 'State of Yorigin II' on Saturday when another bumper crowd is expected at Clifton Park.

The success of York's inaugural East v West game last December - when a four-figure attendance watched players from Heworth and New Earswick All Blacks to the east of the River Ouse team up against York Acorn and York Lokomotive from the west - saw organisers pledge to repeat it annually.

This time, though, the Yorigin challenge match will also act as a selection fixture for the York & District Amateur Rugby League rep team that will not only take on York City Knights over Christmas but also tour France next year, playing a curtain-raiser to a Catalans Dragons fixture.

Alex Simmons, from rugby league television programme Rugby AM, was already lined up to be a guest on the day, and now McDermott, these days a Sky Sports pundit, will also be in attendance.

Acorn head coach Leigh Paul-Rientoul, who is again in charge of the West team, said: "Barrie came to our annual York & District dinner and was really impressed with what we've achieved.

"He's gone as far as looking into setting up Oldham & District, where he's from, copying what we've done.

"There was a great attendance last year and we're hoping Barrie getting involved will help bring the crowd in even more. We've got junior events on the day too and it'll be good for those kids to have Barrie there."

State of Yorigin was first set up in memory of Stuart Evans - a former rugby league referee, historian and administrator, who was a big advocate of York & District ARL - following his death last year.

The charity event - the West team held off an East comeback to win the match 22-20 - has played a big part in helping to resurrect York & District, with the rep squad already playing fixtures.

Paul-Rientoul, who has been at the forefront of that rejuvenation, said: "Stuart would have loved to see what has gone on. We're hoping to keep building and making it bigger.

"This year's East v West is a bit different in that it also gives people the chance to be picked to play against York Knights. There are more tours in the pipeline too, in addition to France."

Open trials have taken place for the two teams, with no fewer than 60 players involved.

New Earswick player-coach Jack Stearman is taking charge of the East team, assisted by former York star Chris Judge and Simon Baynes. Paul-Rientoul will be assisted by Tom Dunmore, of York Lokos, and former Knights favourite Mark Cain.

Like last year, Saturday's match is at the neutral venue of York RUFC's Shipton Road ground, kicking off at 12.30pm.

It will be preceded at 11am by an under-13s curtain-raising Challenge Shield clash between Acorn and holders Heworth, while the new York & District U9s rep ream will play at half-time.

Food and drink will be available outdoors, with the clubhouse bar also open.

Admission costs £5 for adults, or free for children.

There is an extra £1 fee to gain admission to the upstairs bar where the after-match presentations will be made by McDermott and Simmons.

l YORK will have four representatives in the 25-man Yorkshire squad for Sunday's BARLA Tri-Series opener against Lancashire at Stanningley. Heworth half-back Liam Jackson will be joined by Acorn trio Jack Stewart, Reece Rushworth and Tom Hill. The White Rose are again coached by Acorn boss Leigh Paul-Rientoul.