Burgess makes England rugby training squad

Sam Burgess has been called into England’s training squad for the Rugby World Cup after barely half a year in the 15-man game following his switch from rugby league.

Winger Chris Ashton was recalled after missing the last two Six Nations, while 20-year-old forward Maro Itoje was one of five uncapped players to make the cut when coach Stuart Lancaster announced a 50-man group on Wednesday.

Toulon flanker Steffon Armitage failed to earn a call-up, despite his continued strong form for the reigning European champions, as Lancaster stuck to England’s policy of not picking overseas-based players.

The squad will be trimmed to 31 names on August 31.

Burgess began his union career in November and has played at centre and as a flanker, faring better in the back row.

He joined Bath after claiming an NRL title with South Sydney in 2014, the club’s first premiership in 43 years.

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