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McQueen, Heighington in England squad

Press Association logoPress Association 24/04/2017

Australian-born NRL forwards Chris McQueen and Chris Heighington have been called into the England rugby league squad to face Samoa next month.

England and Brisbane coach Wayne Bennett included the pair in a 20-man squad announced on Monday for the Test in Sydney on May 6.

Born in Brisbane, Gold Coast backrower McQueen has made six State of Origin appearances for Queensland and qualifies for Bennett's squad through his England-born father.

The 29-year-old McQueen was approached to play for England in the 2013 World Cup but rejected it in the hope of winning Origin honours and he went on to play in six consecutive matches for the Maroons from 2013-14.

He also made a second appearance for the Australian Prime Minister's XIII against Papua New Guinea.

McQueen will be joined in the squad by his former South Sydney teammates Sam and Thomas Burgess.

Cronulla bench forward Heighington was recalled after he was last selected under Steve McNamara in 2011.

St George Illawarra five-eighth Gareth Widdop, Canberra duo Josh Hodgson and Elliot Whitehead and Canterbury prop James Graham make it eight NRL players in the squad.

Rabbitohs forward George Burgess wasn't eligible after he copped a four-week NRL suspension for a shoulder charge on Friday night.

Wigan forward Sean O'Loughlin returns to the squad as skipper after missing the 2016 Four Nations tournament through injury, beating Sam Burgess to the captaincy.

England squad: Sam Burgess, Thomas Burgess, Luke Gale, James Graham, Ryan Hall, Zak Hardaker, Chris Heighington, Chris Hill, Josh Hodgson, Jermaine McGillvary, Mike McMeeken, Chris McQueen, Sean O'Loughlin (capt), Mark Percival, Scott Taylor, Alex Walmsley, Kallum Watkins, Elliott Whitehead, Gareth Widdop, George Williams.

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