ENGLAND captain Sean O'Loughlin says Jermaine McGillvary's success in fighting a biting charge has given the whole team a World Cup lift.

The Huddersfield winger was cleared of a charge of contrary conduct by a tournament disciplinary panel in Sydney, freeing him up for Sunday's final group game against France in Perth.

McGillvary could have been banned for up to 12 weeks had he been found guilty of biting Lebanon captain Robbie Farah during last Saturday's match at the Sydney Football Stadium but he was exonerated, much to the relief of the player.

O'Loughlin said: "I think all the boys were pumped just for Jerry. He was obviously worried where things were.

"To get him back and involved in the tournament is great for him and the boys all around him as well."

McGillvary maintained his innocence, and has said he is outraged about the damage to his reputation, but O'Loughlin says the vagaries of a different judicial system to the one that operates in Super League made for an anxious 48 hours for his team-mate.

"Obviously you don't know how the system works over here, if it works slightly different or not, but I think most of the boys knew there wasn't much in it from Jerry's point of view and they were just glad he got the decision," said O'Loughlin.

"He knew there wasn't much in it. I think it was just the fact that it was out of his hands a little bit and the waiting around and that kind of stuff.

"He took it all in his stride and, as soon as the decision was made, you could see he was pumped to know that he could carry on playing in the tournament."

Coach Wayne Bennett had Ryan Hall, England's all-time leading try-scorer, standing by to take McGillvary's place in the team for the game at the Rectangular Stadium.

But O'Loughlin admits the availability of the powerfully-built McGillvary, who has scored tries in both group games so far, is a major boost.

The skipper said: "That's the biggest thing for us. We want him playing alongside us. He's had a fantastic two games already and I'm sure he'll feature heavily in the forthcoming games as well."

McGillvary, who appeared via a video link from the England team hotel in Fremantle for the disciplinary hearing, said the fact that he was charged at all was outrageous.

He said: "I've been a pro for ten years and I've got an outstanding disciplinary record. I've never been charged with anything like this.

"I'm outraged about what it's done to my reputation. I'm not that sort of player. I've never bit someone and I never will."

A three-man panel, which included former Wigan and Great Britain centre Barrie-Jon Mather, heard evidence for more than an hour but took just three minutes to deliver their not-guilty verdict.

McGillvary, one of only two specialist wingers in the 24-man squad, was flanked by head coach Wayne Bennett and team manager Jamie Peacock throughout the hearing and England engaged the services of leading NRL barrister Nick Ghabar to lead their defence.

Prosecutor Peter McGrath claimed that a still photograph taken by the match commissioner showed a mark just above strapping on Farah's left wrist was from a bite.

Yet the hearing was told McGillvary was wearing a mouthguard and a report by England team doctor Chris Brookes, a qualified dental surgeon, said the mark was consistent with a "forearm being inserted into a mouth'', rather than a bite.