BLAKE Austin has been added to England's Elite Performance Squad.

The Wire stand-off, who is eligible through his Middlesex-born grandmother, is the only new face among Wayne Bennett's 27-man squad.

It is the strongest indication yet that 28-year-old Austin, who leads the Steve Prescott Man of Steel leaderboard having scored 19 tries so far this season, will be strongly considered for the season-ending Great Britain tour of New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

"Blake Austin is a quality player but just as important is his commitment to joining our England squad," RFL rugby director Kevin Sinfield said.

“Unlike a few other guys who would qualify to play for Great Britain later this year through their ancestry from other Home Nations, he would make himself unavailable to play any representative rugby in Australia as soon as he plays for England because England are a Tier One nation.

“That is a good indication of his commitment to joining our group, and we believe he will be a very positive addition."

Austin's inclusion takes the Warrington contingent to seven, meaning they have the most representatives of any club in the squad.

Josh Charnley, Daryl Clark, Ben Currie, Chris Hill, Jack Hughes and Stefan Ratchford are also included.