Tomkins and Greenwood among the Wigan Warriors included in England squad

Sam Tomkins and Joe Greenwood are among five Wigan players included in the England squad to face New Zealand this autumn.

Tuesday, 2nd October 2018, 10:02 am
Updated Tuesday, 2nd October 2018, 11:13 am
England's Sam Tomkins after the 2013 World Cup semi-final

Captain Sean O’Loughlin, John Bateman and George Williams are also in Wayne Bennett’s panel for the three-Test series, which starts later this month.

Greenwood, who has been impressive for Wigan since joining from Gold Coast Titans in mid-season, is one of five uncapped players included.

And Tomkins, who scored 17 tries in 23 Tests, has been recalled after a four-year absence from the England squad.

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But the 29-year-old’s call-up will not be a complete surprise, given his strong form and his inclusion in the elite training squad in the summer.

He said last week: “We’ve had three meetings and it’s good to be back in there.

“It’s always a goal to play for England and hopefully I’ll get that chance against New Zealand later this year.”

Other uncapped players are Wakefield’s Tom Johnstone, Reece Lyne, St Helens prop Luke Thompson and Castleford forward Adam Milner.

Six members of the World Cup final team were ruled out by injury – Gareth Widdop, Kallum Watkins, Ryan Hall, Ben Currie, Alex Walmsley and James Roby, the St Helens hooker who will have surgery at the end of the Super League season.

Bennett said: “The England team have an attractive and important series of matches this autumn, and the players are relishing the prospect of representing their country in front of home crowds again.“It’s important that we build on the positive work of the last couple of years, including last year’s World Cup and the Denver Test, against what we’d expect to be the usual stern challenge from the Kiwis.”

The England Knights squad for the forthcoming tour of Papua New Guinea to be named tomorrow (Wednesday).

The Kiwis are coached by ex-Wigan boss Michael Maguire.

The first Test is at Hull on Saturday, October 27 before moving on to Liverpool’s Anfield and Leeds’ Elland Road on successive Sundays.

England squad in full: John Bateman (Wigan), George Burgess, Sam Burgess, Tom Burgess (all Souths), Daryl Clark (Warrington), Jake Connor (Hull FC), Luke Gale (Castleford), James Graham (St George Illawarra Dragons), Joe Greenwood (Wigan), Chris Hill (Warrington), Josh Hodgson (Canberra), Tom Johnstone (Wakefield), Jonny Lomax (St Helens), Reece Lyne (Wakefield), Tommy Makinson (St Helens), Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield), Adam Milner (Castleford), Sean O’Loughlin (Wigan), Mark Percival (St Helens), Stefan Ratchford (Warrington), Luke Thompson (St Helens), Sam Tomkins (Wigan), Elliott Whitehead (Canberra), George Williams (Wigan)