Two players facing ban

Josh Charnley was in fine form against Leeds
Josh Charnley was in fine form against Leeds

Wigan have been dealt a hammer-blow before their crunch fortnight with two players facing bans.

Taulima Tautai has been charged with Grade B Dangerous Contact for a tackle on Leeds’ Adam Cuthbertson in Friday’s 18-16 defeat.

And winger Josh Charnley has been charged with Grade C Contact with Match Official, for grabbing the shoulder of official Robert Hicks while protesting a decision.

Neither player has the option of taking an early guilty plea, which would have automatically resulted in them receiving the lowest suggested punishments.

The guidelines for a Grade B offence is a one-two game ban, and for Grade C two-three matches.

Instead they will face the RFL disciplinary on Tuesday night to learn their fate.

Both look set to sit out Friday’s derby tussle with St Helens, and are at risk of missing the following week’s Challenge Cup semi-final with Hull FC.

Tautai’s challenge, around the knees of Cuthbertson, went unpunished at the time but coach Brian McDermott later called for the technique to be outlawed.

“I wouldn’t look to Shaun Wane or Tautai,” he said. “(But) if those things are not punished in the right way, your silence actively encourages them.

“If you continue running those types of tackles, a player will end up with an absolute leg-snap.”

If Charnley misses out, Lewis Tierney would seem the most obvious player to fill the wing spot, given Sam Tomkins is likely to return to the full-back berth.

And in the pack, Shaun Wane expects to welcome back Sean O’Loughlin and John Bateman from suspensions.