Phelps boosts Wigan ahead of showdown - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Phelps boosts Wigan ahead of showdown

By Nick Clowes 12/03/2009 01:54:23 PM Comments (0)

Wigan centre Cameron Phelps is set for a shock return to action against reigning champions Leeds on Friday - less than a month after tearing his hamstring.

The former Bulldogs back limped out of the Warriors' 18-10 defeat against Hull FC last month and was expected to be out until April.

But coach Brian Noble confirmed Phelps - who scored five tries last season - is ready to defy the JJB Stadium medical staff and return to the Warriors' ranks.

"It is a real boost to both Cameron and the rest of the team," said Noble. "Considering the nature of his injury, he's come back into the fold far quicker than any of us expected.

"He has responded really well to treatment and he might be back this weekend."

Table-topping Leeds have New Zealand international fullback Brent Webb in their squad for the first time this season after shoulder surgery.

But Noble, who has guided his troops to back-to-back wins over Harlequins and Bradford following a disastrous start to the season, added: "We have built up some good momentum and we must take that into the Leeds game.

"Leeds are used to success and the expectations they have on them in pressure situations and that's what we have got to match to go forward."

Former South Sydney coach Shaun McRae has been given a vote of confidence by the Salford board after just one win from the opening four games.

Salford travel to one of McRae's former clubs, St Helens, without halfback Richie Myler who has broken a hand with Mick Potter's men missing suspended England forward Maurie Fa'asavalu.

New Warrington coach Tony Smith will bid for his first win in charge at Harlequins and he has New Zealand forward Louis Anderson available after he escaped a suspension following a fight with Leeds forward Ryan Bailey last week.

Huddersfield coach Nathan Brown has a selection headache after winger Martin Aspinwall and second row Andy Raleigh joined the growing injury list at the Galpharm Stadium but in-form Castleford have no new injury worries.

Under fire Bradford Bulls coach Steve McNamara is still without ex-Sydney Roosters second-rower David Solomona for the visit of high flying Hull with a shoulder injury.

Former Canberra Raiders hooker Brad Drew is a doubt for Wakefield's clash against Catalans Dragons with a shoulder injury, while on-loan Bradford winger Dave Halley has a leg injury.

But Danny Scunthorpe (wrist) and ex-Cronulla Sharks forward Tevita Leo-Latu (shoulder) could be set to return.

Catalans Dragons will be without controversial new signing Greg Bird, who has returned to Australia following an impressive debut last weekend for legal reasons.

Meanwhile, Super League new-boys Celtic Crusaders could have halfback Jace Van Dijk back from a neck injury as they chase their first points of the season at Hull KR.

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