Maguire to recall young gun

Decision time - Michael Maguire
Decision time - Michael Maguire
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MICHAEL Maguire is considering recalling young-gun Joe Mellor from his loan spell at Harlequins after Joel and Sam Tomkins were handed suspensions last night.

Joel was hit with a two-game ban and Sam a one-match ban by the RFL disciplinary panel, for their parts in a heated exchange with Kirk Yeaman in Sunday’s 14-12 win against Hull FC.

Yeaman was also banned for a match.

All three players were fined £300 each.

The Tomkins brothers’ suspension takes the list of unavailable front-line stars for this Friday’s trip to table-toppers Huddersfield to eight.

And Maguire admits he may bring Mellor back from the capital and hand him a chance in the Warriors’ first-team.

Mellor made a promising Super League debut for loan-club Quins in a 27-16 victory against St Helens last weekend.

Maguire said: “Joe is definitely a candidate who could come in and maybe get his opportunity.

“He performed for Harlequins last week, he pushed the team around and defended well, he’s heading in the right direction.”

Wigan were already without injured stars Stuart Fielden, Pat Richards, Brett Finch and Eamon O’Carroll before last night’s bans.

In addition, Martin Gleeson is still out of the frame amid widespread speculation he has played his last match for the club, and Maguire admits half-back Paul Deacon is a huge doubt after being knocked out against Hull.

In addition to recalling Mellor, Maguire is likely to bring Chris Tuson and fit-again Australian Amos Roberts back into the team.

Mellor joined Quins along with Karl Pryce – who has scored two tries in his last two matches – at the start of the season.

They joined for an initial month period, but with the intention that those loan spells would be extended until the end of the campaign.

But a mounting injury list and these latest suspensions – Joel’s for recklessly striking Yeaman, Sam’s for running in and punching – has forced Maguire’s hand.

Sam will return to the side to face Warrington a week on Friday – a game that may also see Brett Finch make his debut for the Warriors, following his off-season move from Melbourne.

Joel will not be available until the following week’s tussle with Leeds.

Hull’s Lee Radford was also cited by the RFL and was fined £300 but was not banned.

Mellor is a half-back or hooker who won the man of the match for the second-string in their 2009 Grand Final triumph.

But he missed most of last year due to a knee injury suffered in training.

If he is recalled, he will be able to return to Harlequins for another loan spell, but must once again stay for at least a month before Wigan can exercise a recall option.