Rare injury boost for Warriors boss Wane

Shaun Wane
Shaun Wane

Shaun Wane has received a welcomed injury-boost.

Utility Nick Gregson was taken to hospital on Friday night with a suspected broken jaw.

But scans have confirmed there is no break and he should be cleared to face Swinton it the Challenge Cup on Sunday.

Sam Powell, who also left the 31-16 loss to Salford early through injury, still has a swollen ankle. He will have it scanned today and is a doubt for this weekend.

Although Gregson, 21, is not a first-team regular, his fitness has helped ease a halfback crisis this week.

First-choice halves Thomas Leuluai and George Williams are injured, back-up Jake Shorrocks is out for the season, and those who can play in the position - Sam Tomkins and Morgan Escare - are also sidelined.

Last Friday, Wane handed a debut to Under-19s half Josh Woods.

But he has been ruled out of Sunday’s match because he played in the Challenge Cup in the previous round for Swinton, helping them dump Super League opponents Huddersfield out of the knock-out competition.

If Powell is ruled out, Wane could favour a makeshift halfback pairing of Gregson and Sean O’Loughlin.

Both are natural forwards but have filled in at halfback. O’Loughlin is on his way back home after guiding England to a 30-10 win against Samoa in Sydney.

Had either been ruled out, Wane would have been left desperately short of playmaker options. Forward Joel Tomkins finished in one of the key roles on Friday.

Williams’ knee injury is not serious, and he could be back in the mix for the following week’s game – the headlining Magic Weekend showdown with Warrington.

Hooker Micky McIlorum will also be available for Sunday’s Cup match, after serving a one-game suspension, which may relegate Josh Ganson to the bench.

John Bateman (back), Tomkins (foot), Leuluai (jaw) and Oliver Gildart (back) will be drip-fed back into the side over the next few weeks as they recover from their injuries.

Dom Manfredi, Tony Clubb, Ben Flower, Anthony Gelling and Escare are sidelined long-term.