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Heighington to replace Gallen in NRL All Stars team

NRL.com Wed, Feb 06, 2013 - 10:40 AM

Paul Gallen has been forced to withdraw from All Stars due to an ongoing quad injury. Copyright: NRL Photos

Experienced 201-game campaigner and former English international Chris Heighington will represent his new club for the first time this weekend but it will be in an NRL All Stars jersey not a Sharks one after being named today to replace injured Cronulla captain Paul Gallen.

Gallen was ruled out of Saturday’s 2013 Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars clash at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium after he failed to complete training this morning (quad injury).

Heighington, 30, will join the NRL All Stars camp in Brisbane later today and will have his first hit-out with the team at their last training session on Friday (Thursday is a rest day). NRL All Stars Coach Wayne Bennett is yet to determine the starting line-up.

“It’s certainly unfortunate for Gal but I’m excited to receive the call-up to play,” Heighington said.

“All Stars is a great event and I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to play with and against some of the best players in the game.”

Heighington is one of eight players making their NRL All Stars debuts this weekend.

The Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars is supported by Tourism and Events Queensland as part of a growing calendar of sporting, cultural, regional and business events across Queensland.