Injury news

Date published: Thursday, March 18, 2010

JOHN Gillam, the Roughyeds winger, is due to have a scan on the shoulder he damaged in a Northern Rail Cup tie against his former club Hornets RL at Sedgley Park more than five weeks ago.

He made a comeback in the Reserve team at Keighley on March 4 only to suffer a recurrence of the injury.

“I’m just bitterly disappointed and frustrated,” said the former Oldham St Anne’s, Hornets and Blackpool Panthers winger, who was playing only his second game for his hometown club when he was hurt.

Back-row forward Kashley Watkins, another new signing this season, is also cursing his bad luck.

He broke a wrist in his first game for the club in a pre-season run-out at Batley in January and he is still sidelined two months later, having had the plaster removed and then put back on for another three weeks.

Chris Clarke, who suffered a similar injury in the narrow Northern Rail Cup defeat by Championship side Sheffield Eagles on February 22, was due to have his plaster removed today.

“He will be hoping for a better report than Kashley,” said coach Tony Benson, who has so many players currently having treatment that he has welcomed the break that sees his Championship 1 table-toppers out of action until the derby clash at Hornets RL on Good Friday.

The next home game will be against Workington Town on Easter Monday — two games in four days that will require a reasonably clean bill of health going into the holiday weekend fixtures.

Ben Heaton, who was knocked out in last Friday’s impressive 29-16 win at Hunslet Hawks, and Matty Ashe, who received a painful poke in the eye in the same match, suffered no serious damage and are now fully recovered.

But several other players, most of them injured in a tough game at the South Leeds Stadium, are under treatment for a variety of bumps and bruises.

They include Neil Roden (ankle), Jason Boults (shoulder), Paul O’Connor (shoulder and broken finger), Valu Bentley (shoulder), Paul Reilly (knee), Lucas Onyango (knee) and Danny Whitmore (ankle).

That makes a total of ten players on the casualty list with the unlucky Gillam the one causing most concern.

Added Benson: “In normal circumstances, if we had a game this weekend, most of the others would have had to battle on regardless.

“Fortunately, we have the opportunity to try to clear as many as we can before our next game.”