Winger winging back for Wakey clash

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PAT Richards will be available for this weekend’s against Wakefield – despite flying home to Australia for his brother’s wedding!

The goal-kicking winger jetted out of England on Tuesday morning to be best man for his sibling, Keiran, at a ceremony in Port Macquarie, north of Sydney.

But he arrives back from his 24,000-mile return trip on Sunday morning – just hours before Wigan’s match at the DW Stadium.

Coach Shaun Wane said: “He’s the best man at his brother’s wedding, so I didn’t want to stop that happening.

“He’s been outstanding for me, his form this season has been the best I’ve known it in terms of consistency, and this is a chance for me to repay him and support him.

“When he asked, it was an instant ‘yes’ – as long as he didn’t miss a game, I was happy with it. He will be back Sunday morning, so he’ll be fine.”

Wane said Richards, 30, has been given special instructions to follow to help reduce the impact of the long whistle-stop trip.

“He’s got protocols with his diet and hydration – he’s staying on England time – so it’s not a boozy wedding, I want him back in good nick,” added Wane.

JOSH Charnley (ankle) and Sean O’Loughlin (ribs) were last night rated as 50-50 to be fit for Sunday’s home match against Wakefield. But Kiwi utility Anthony Gelling could return. Lee Mossop (shoulder) and Harrison Hansen (wrist) are inching closer to a return, but the following week’s match at Bradford was a more realistic aim, according to coach Shaun Wane, who will name his 19-man squad today.

Tickets for Wigan’s away game at Bradford on April 14 went on sale today.