Stenchion injury blow

Date published: Thursday, August 23, 2012

UNLUCKY Luke Stenchion, the Oldham RL prop, has broken a bone in his left hand for the THIRD time this season.

It happened in Sunday’s morale-boosting win against high-flying Workington Town at Whitebank in which Stenchion was one of four players ordered from the field after a free-for-all in the last minute.

He and Town’s Brett Phillips got yellow cards for fighting — the match officials judged Phillips to have started it — and Jamie Acton (Oldham) and Elliott Miller (Town) were given red cards for running in and getting involved.

“I didn’t realise there was anything wrong with my hand until long after the game was over,” said Stenchion.

“Even then it just felt as though I had bent my little finger back, but by Tuesday it was very painful so I went to hospital and x-rays confirmed a break near the base of that finger.

“I haven’t a clue how or when I did it, but I can’t believe my bad luck this year.”

It struck first in a pre-season game at Whitehaven when the 26-year-old former Batley Bulldogs prop fractured a bone close to his left thumb.

He was out for three months before breaking the same hand again, close to the index finger, in a bizarre incident during the team warm-up before a game at Whitebank against North Wales Crusaders on May 6.

This time he needed an operation, so he was sidelined for another three months before starting his comeback at Barrow on August 5.

He finished that game and the next one against Doncaster without mishap, but he was playing only his fifth game of the season, including the friendly at Whitehaven in January, when he suffered his third fracture last Sunday.

“If it’s any consolation,” he added, “they were three separate and totally unrelated injuries so it’s down to sheer bad luck rather than a weakness in the hand.

“The specialist doesn’t think I need surgery this time, but the hand will be in plaster for four to six weeks.

“Good luck to the team for the rest of the season and roll on 2013. I hope it’s a better year for me than this one.”

With a possible shot at the play-offs looming, Stenchion’s loss is another blow for the Roughyeds who have been hit by one injury setback after another throughout the year.

Said chairman Chris Hamilton: “He’s a great lad and a top pro. I’m bitterly disappointed for him.

“We thought he was going to be a big player for us this year, but he has had nothing but wretched ill luck.”

Others on the injured list include Mark Brocklehurst (hamstring), Mark McCully (collar bone), Chris Murphy (dead leg) and Valu Bentley (calf).

All four will be assessed at training tonight after receiving treatment and rehab on Tuesday.

Roughyeds have a weekend off because of the Carnegie Challenge Cup final at Wembley and their last game of the regular season is at Gateshead a week on Sunday,September 2.