Austin, Hastings and Coote included as Great Britain reveal 24-man tour squad

Heritage players Blake Austin, Jackson Hastings and Lachlan Coote have all been included in Wayne Bennett’s squad for Great Britain’s tour of New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

In a 24-man squad that is likely to create plenty of discussion, Wigan full-back Zak Hardaker is also included despite not featuring in the original training squad.

James Graham will captain the team in the absence of Sean O’Loughlin and Sam Burgess.

The Oceania tour consists of four matches, the first of which against Tonga on October 26, before two matches against New Zealand and ending on November 16 in Port Moresby against Papua New Guinea.

On the selection, head coach Wayne Bennett said: “It was pretty tough actually, with a lot of players in contention. A couple of guys got injured and that’s taken a bit of the pressure off, and given a couple of other guys opportunities.

“I think we’ve got a pretty good squad which is more than representative of the best players in the game in England and Australia.”

Full 24-man Great Britain squad:

James Graham, Blake Austin, John Bateman, Tom Burgess, Daryl Clark, Jake Connor, Lachlan Coote, Oliver Gildart, Zak Hardaker, Jackson Hastings, Ryan Hall, Chris Hill, Josh Hodgson, Jack Hughes, Josh Jones, Jonny Lomax, Jermaine McGillvary, Joe Philbin, Luke Thompson, Jake Trueman, Alex Walmsley, Elliott Whitehead, Gareth Widdop, George Williams.

Tour Schedule (all games live on BBC):

Saturday October 26: v Tongan Invitational XIII (Hamilton)

Saturday November 2: v New Zealand (Eden Park, Auckland)

Saturday November 9: v New Zealand (Christchurch)

Saturday November 16: v Papua New Guinea (Port Moresby)

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