Zak Hardaker is out of England’s World Cup squad after he was provisionally suspended for failing a drugs test.
Castleford fullback Hardaker, one of three nominees for this year’s Man of Steel, was omitted from the Tigers’ Grand Final squad against Leeds Rhinos on Saturday for an unspecified “breach of club rules”.
Cas, who finished 10 points clear of Leeds at the end of the Super 8s, lost the Old Trafford final 24-6.
A Rugby Football League Spokesperson, said: “The Rugby Football League can confirm that Zak Hardaker is provisionally suspended from all competition after it received notification from UK Anti-Doping that he had tested positive for a banned substance following a Super 8s game between Castleford Tigers and Leeds Rhinos on September 8, 2017.
“He will therefore not be considered for the England Rugby League World Cup squad due to be announced today (Monday) at 12pm.
“The Rugby Football League will be making no further comment until the outcome of the case has been determined.”