Eels skipper to have late hamstring test - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels skipper to have late hamstring test

By Ed Jackson 28/09/2009 05:54:45 PM Comments (0)

Parramatta skipper Nathan Cayless' NRL grand final dream hinges on a literal make-or-break fitness test on his injured hamstring this Saturday.

The veteran prop appeared no chance to play in Sunday's decider against Melbourne after limping off during last Friday's preliminary final win over the Bulldogs.

But after scans showed much less damage than initially feared, Cayless says whether he plays against the Storm or not is down to a test which could possibly leave the muscle completely torn.

"Obviously it feels a lot better today from Friday and I've done everything that I had to do over the weekend," Cayless told reporters on Monday.

"It's probably in my favour that I've got plenty of time until Sunday.

"I'll have a fitness test on Saturday and I'll (either) re-tear it then, that's what the test is going to be, or I'll get through it and be able to play.

"If I don't play that means I've re-torn it, that's the extent they're going to go and that's fair enough."

The former New Zealand captain said there was no way he'd take the field against the Storm if he wasn't fully fit.

"Quite frankly the boys have got a pretty good record without me anyway," Cayless said.

"Obviously on Friday night I was pretty devastated when I came off but second half I came back out, sat on the bench and I was just so happy for all the boys in the team and everyone involved in the club.

"I've just got to be positive, keep positive. Prepare like I'm going to play the game and if I get ruled out on Saturday then so be it ... that's all I can do mate."

Should Cayless be scratched, the man waiting in the wings is rookie Broderick Wright.

But while the 22-year-old Wright is champing at the bit to be involved in a grand final, he knows Cayless won't give up his spot easily.

And nor does he want one of his idols to have injury stop him from attempting to erase the memories of 2001's grand final loss to Newcastle.

"Hopefully he can play, he's the captain," Wright said.

"He's a tough bugger, he's quite resilient. He's been around the blocks for a long time, he's getting physio every day and he's the ultimate professional so he's going to give himself every chance to play.

"He deserves it, I'm really young and hopefully I get another chance one day, but he's coming towards the end of his career and he really deserves to win one."

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