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“Long periods of time” – Leigh Leopards confirm double injury blow

Leigh Leopards celebrate

Leigh Leopards relinquished any chance of repeating their Challenge Cup success when they lost to Hull KR yesterday but fans may be more concerned about the double injury blow that Adrian Lam revealed post-game.

The holders were knocked out as Hull KR won 26-14 at Craven Park with Willie Peters’ side bouncing back from a sloppy first half to get the job done thanks to a brace from Joe Burgess and scores from both Niall Evalds and Elliot Minchella.

Leigh had completed at a whopping 96% in the first half to help them head into the sheds 8-6 up but they couldn’t sustain their effort as the home side battled back and got “revenge” on the Leopards for last year’s loss at Wembley.

It marked the sixth loss of Leigh Leopards season and a major factor for the club failing to hit the highs of 2023 has been injury issues with Edwin Ipape leaving the field just nine minutes into their opening game and other stars such as John Asiata and Tom Briscoe missing significant game time.

Leigh were boosted by the return of Tom Amone who Adrian Lam lauded the praise on, however, his running-mate and fellow prop Robbie Mulhern didn’t pass fit and it’s now been confirmed that he’ll be out for an extended period alongside full-back Gareth O’Brien who also missed out.

Speaking after the game to Leigh Leopards TV, Lam explained: “He (O’Brien) has torn his calf, he’s going to be out for a long period of time. Mulhern’s the same. It’s not getting any better.”

Even worse was the confirmation that he expects to be without both men for six weeks, a major blow for Leigh Leopards, but Lam tried to look at the positives regarding the return of Tom Amone.

Returning Leigh Leopards prop dubbed “best player on the field”

Leigh Leopards

Credit: Imago Images

Tom Amone helped Leigh Leopards set the tone in the first half and on a day when the club ceded their grip on the Challenge Cup trophy, it the forward’s performance was a shining light.

Lam argued:”Having Tom Amone back was a positive. I thought he played really well considering he hasn’t played for a month. I thought he was inspirational, really, I really thought he was the best player on the field.

“This whole week he has lifted the team. That’s what you miss when you’ve got the Asiatas and the Ipapes and players like that out injured. They’re all Super League Dream Team players from last year. They bring experience, they bring a voice and they bring the presence and that’s what we miss.”

He also hinted that Amone could be joined by some fellow returnees in the coming weeks: “Moving forward there could be one or two coming back the week after next.”

Ultimately the news of Mulhern and O’Brien’s injury woes will be of huge concern for fans of Leigh, as would the current form, but their head coach has promised that the “time will come” and the club will turn the corner.

“There’s a group of men there that I care about, they care about each other and I thought today and every other game of the season they’ve been close in parts, they’ve been really, really good and in other parts they’ve been poor.

“We’ve lacked some consistency but that comes with changing players all the time and positions and even Gaz O’Brien pulling out this week and Mulhern again. It’s hard to change a team every week, we haven’t had the same team for two games ago this year.

“That time will come where we do, but I’m happy with where we’re at as a group, even though we’re not getting the results we deserve or we want. The group’s working really hard and I can see changes in the group and everywhere.”

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. John Rushbrooke

    April 14, 2024 at 8:20 am

    Welcome to the real world. You had a remarkably “lucky” season last year in terms of injuries, but now you are picking them up, it’s exposing the lack of depth in the team.

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