England name unchanged side for Kangaroos clash

England coach Steve McNamara has named an unchanged line-up for his team’s Four Nations clash with Australia in Melbourne on Sunday morning.

There could yet be changes before kick-off, however, with skipper Sean O’Loughlin to undergo fitness tests later in the week.

O’Loughlin remains the only member of McNamara’s squad to have ever beaten Australia, when he was part of the Great Britain squad in the 2004 and 2006 Tri Nations series.

“We have named the same 17 as last week,” said McNamara.

“A few of our blokes haven’t been able to train fully during the early part of the week.

“Even though we have named the same side, there could be a change or two at the back end of the week.

“Those that were unable to train are making decent progress. Sean O’Loughlin is definitely improving and we will continue to monitor him throughout this week.

“It is really difficult to name a team earlier in the week. Firmer decision will be made towards the weekend, when we arrive in Melbourne.

“It was a hard-fought win for us against Samoa. There is room for improvement within our game. We had to overcome a very talented and tenacious team with limited preparation in extreme heat.

“I was pleased with the way we dug in and found a way to win in extreme circumstances. We will have to show that same resolve this week.”

ENGLAND:

1.    Sam Tomkins (New Zealand Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)
2.    Josh Charnley (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)
3.    Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos, Latchford Albion)
4.    Michael Shenton (Castleford Tigers, Upton)
5.    Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos, Oulton Raiders)
6.    Gareth Widdop (St George Illawarra Dragons, King Cross)
7.    Matty Smith (Wigan Warriors, Blackbrook)
8.    George Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)
9.    Josh Hodgson (Hull KR, East Hull)
10.  James Graham (captain) (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, Blackbrook)
11.  Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)
12.  Joel Tomkins (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)
13.  Joe Westerman (Hull FC, Featherstone Lions)
14.  Daryl Clark (Castleford Tigers, Fryston Warriors)
15.  Brett Ferres (Huddersfield Giants, Smawthorne Panthers)
16.  Tom Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)
17.  Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves, New Spring Lions)

The match will be broadcast live on BBC Two with the programme starting at 4.30am (GMT).

Four Nations highlights will be broadcast on BBC Two at 5.00pm (GMT) on Sunday November 2.

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