Long flies home

English halfback Sean Long is on his way back to England after parting with the Great Britain Tri Nations squad.

Long, who starred in the Lions' 23-12 upset win over Australia earlier this month, was seen at Sydney Airport this afternoon after failing to attend a recuperation session with the side at Manly Beach this morning.

A Great Britain media spokesman said the reason for his departure was personal.

"Sean Long has left the Great Britain training camp base and has returned home to the UK for personal reasons," the statement said.

"No replacement will be called up and the squad will now continue preparations for the match against Australia at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on Saturday."

But rumours abounded as to the exact nature of the halfback?s departure with English news agency the Press Association reporting his return has come amid allegations that he gambled on the results of matches.

Meanwhile, some good news came out of the British camp with Wigan captain Sean O'Loughlin putting an end to speculation linking him with a move to new NRL side the Gold Coast Titans by signing a new two-year contract with the English Super League club.