SEAN O’Loughlin hopes he can finally draw a line under his injury frustrations tomorrow night.
The inspirational captain is poised to make his comeback in front of the Sky Sports cameras at Huddersfield after recovering from an abductor problem.
The 31-year-old and Australian No.1 Matty Bowen have both been named in the squad – though Ben Flower, Eddy Pettybourne and Liam Farrell will have to wait for their returns.
O’Loughlin hopes the match against the Giants signals the end of his injury woes, having played just five games in the last four months of the Warriors’ double-winning 2013 campaign through injury and missed nine of their 16 fixtures this year.
He said last night: “It’s been a bit frustrating.
“I suffered a neck injury in the World Club Challenge, I had an epidural after the Easter programme and then when I got over that, I pulled my abductor just before the Leeds game.
“It’s been something slightly different each time, but I hope it’s behind me now.”
Some have suggested O’Loughlin has become more vulnerable to injuries after playing more than a decade at the top-level.
“I just think it’s one of those things,” said the loose-forward, who starred for England in the World Cup.
“I had times when I was younger when I had injuries, and then I’ve had seasons recently when I’ve hardly missed any games.” In his absence, he has watched Wigan’s young players take their chances and claim successive victories away from home against Hull FC, Leeds (at the Magic Weekend) and, last Thursday, at Salford. “They’ve done brilliantly,” said O’Loughlin, who has not lost a domestic game in more than a year.
“In the past we’ve always been able to produce good young players.
“But it makes it easier when it’s one or two, and they’re drip-fed into the team and the rest of the side are regular players. With the injuries we’ve had, we’ve had a big chunk of young players get their chance.