WIGAN loose forward Sean O’Loughlin will remain as the national captain, new England coach Wayne Bennett has announced.
The 66-year-old Australian, who has been appointed as the successor to Steve McNamara, told his first press conference since his appointment on a two-year deal that he will keep changes to a minimum as he seeks to deliver long-awaited success to England.
“I’m not here to re-invent the wheel,” Bennett said. “Steve has done a really good job.
“The team has shown some improvement and they’ve just had a wonderful series victory over New Zealand.
“Everybody is talking about taking that next step and that’s why I’m here, hopefully I can take them to the next level.”
O’Loughlin, who led England to their 2-1 triumph over the Kiwis, took over the captaincy following the retirement from the international game of Kevin Sinfield after the 2013 World Cup and will remain in position for the 2016 Four Nations Series.
“That certainly won’t change, why should it?” Bennett said. “He’s a good leader who’s highly regarded in Australia by everyone and the feedback on him has been outstanding from people I’ve spoken to.
“So there’s no cause to change it. I haven’t come here to change things that worked in the past.”
Bennett told the press conference that he will bring his own fitness expert, Englishman Jeremy Hickmans, over from Brisbane along with a IT expert, Scott Barker, but expects the rest of his coaching staff to come from Super League.