Warriors coach Shaun Wane is hoping for a shred of good news on the injury front ahead of Castleford’s visit to the DW Stadium on Friday.
Wane was without 10 front-line players for last weekend’s 62-0 loss to Wakefield, but hopes to have at least one of his absentees back in time for Friday’s clash with Daryl Powell’s men.
We’ve done recovery and quite a few are still illShaun Wane
Wane revealed Ben Flower, Anthony Gelling and Dom Crosby were back in training yesterday morning, but warned the illness which prevented his players from training properly last week is still running through the camp.
“I don’t think I’ll get all three out there but if I get one back I’ll be happy,” the coach told the Evening Post.
“We’ve done recovery and quite a few are still ill.
“We have a week to get the players we have into shape and get 17 committed players out on the field.”
Flower, Crosby and Gelling are fighting to be in contention to appear in a squad which was also missing Sam Tomkins, George Williams, Sean O’Loughlin, Dom Manfredi, Michael McIlorum and the banned Liam Farrell for last Sunday’s trip to Wakefield.
And as well as Farrell, who will make his return, Wane revealed Bateman, who picked-up a head knock against Hull KR and was affected by the illness, has an outside chance of making his return.
Despite such headaches, which prompted Wane to dish out debuts to Jack Wells and Joe Bretherton on Sunday, he is planning a ‘normal’ week in preparation for this visit of the Tigers, who climbed into the top eight last weekend with victory over high-flying Widnes.
“This week will be nothing special,” said the coach.
“Cas are a good team and we’ll do our homework on them the same as we do every other team.
“They attack well and did to Widnes what we couldn’t so it’s game on.”
Wigan have a mixed record against Castleford in recent years, with the Tigers beating winning 42-14 last March before the Warriors won both clashes at
the DW – 28-0 and 47-12.
And as well as wanting to put right their poor performance on Sunday, regardless of absentees, Warriors will also face their own in full-back Ryan Hampshire, who is on a season-long loan to the Tigers.
“He’s playing if he wants – we have a good relationship with Cas,” said Wane.
“It works for Rocky and it works for us so it’s a risk we have to take.”