Wane’s late change for Broncos clash

Josh Charnley misses tonight's clash
Josh Charnley misses tonight's clash

Josh Charnley has been ruled out of tonight’s clash against Brisbane.

The England winger has a facial injury which will sideline him for about two weeks.

His absence has opened the door for teenager Oliver Gildart, who hasn’t played a competitive game since last October’s Grand Final.

Shaun Wane had no qualms about thrusting Gidart – usually a centre – into the left wing role.

The Warriors coach said: “Josh is not playing, but we’ve got a great replacement in Gilly.

He’s played on the wing in the past and he’s practised there in pre-season, so he’s very comfortable.

“He’s played in big games, he’s played in a Grand Final and he’s got a mature head, so I’m very chilled putting him in, no question.” Wane oversaw training yesterday and is confident his players are in good shape for this World Club Series showdown.

“I sense a good feeling within the group,” he said.

“I know this group really well and I can tell when they’re on – and they’re on.”

The trained with Steeden balls, rather than the usual Rhino brand used in Super League, and the players were also reminded the fixtures takes place under international rules.

There are some subtle differences, for example, there is no ‘free play’ advantage after an opponent’s mistake.

“We had the referee up so everything is very clear,” said Wane.

“I’m all for one set of rules – I don’t understand the reasons for having different ones.

“But we’ve hammered it home so I don’t see any problems .”

Lizzie Jones will sing before kick-off and Wigan greats including Gary Connolly and Steve Hampson will be introduced to fans at half-time.

A crowd of more than 20,000 is expected tonight for the clash between the respective beaten Grand Finalists. Leeds face North Queensland Cowboys tomorrow for the World Club Challenge.

Tickets are available today, priced from £22 adults and £15 concessions, and the ticket office is open from 12pm.