St Helens will travel to Perpignan for their clash on Friday night against Catalans Dragons knowing that their season is on the line and for two of their stars it could well be the last game of their career.
Both James Roby and Louie McCarthy Scarsbrook are set to retire at the end of the 2023 campaign, one that could possibly end on Friday night with defeat, against the Dragons.
Whilst both 37-year-olds in Roby and LMS will likely feature on Friday night, one man who certainly won’t is second-rower Joe Batchelor.
Batchelor was seen limping off the field early on during Saints win over Warrington Wolves and Paul Wellens has now confirmed that the talented middle won’t feature on Friday, and could even be done for the season should Saints make it to Old Trafford.
Speaking to SaintsTV, Wellens said: “He’s unlikely to be involved if I’m honest; people saw the manner in which he left the field the other day.
“We’ve had some initial scans done, and the prognosis is that it’s not as serious as we probably first thought, but we are awaiting a little bit more information there.
“It’s highly unlikely that he will play this week and should we be fortunate enough to progress next week, it will be touch and go, so we’ll just have to see how things progress in the next 48 hours, but then obviously through into next week as well should we progress.”
Whilst it’s not quite as bad as what was expected, it still could be a season ender for the Englishman, meaning that the Red Vee will need as many big bodies as possible.
One man who has been out of the team with injury of late is Konrad Hurrell but the centre starred for the reserves this past weekend and is now in with a chance of playing Friday.
“It’s a chance, we’ve had good results in the weekend but Konrad has shown in the past how influential he can be for us. He actually played in the Reserves Grand Final on Sunday to give himself some more game time,” Wellens explained.
“I felt that’s what he needed and what he’s been missing, having had that calf injury for the amount of time that he did. Certainly he’ll be in the travelling party and I’ve got to make a tough call there, so it’s one that I welcome, but Konrad’s a great person, great player and someone who contributed largely to the success that we’ve had.”
Hurrell was named in the Red Vee’s 21-man squad with the only two changes being Batchelor and Dan Norman dropping out whilst the suspended George Delaney returned alongside Matthew Foster.
St Helens 21-man squad
1. Jack Welsby
2. Tommy Makinson
3. Will Hopoate
4. Mark Percival
5. Jon Bennison
6. Jonny Lomax
7. Lewis Dodd
8. Alex Walmsley
9. James Roby
10. Matty Lees
11. Sione Mata’utia
13. Morgan Knowles
15. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook
16. Curtis Sironen
19. James Bell
21. Ben Davies
22. Sam Royle
23. Konrad Hurrell
28. Matthew Foster
30. George Delaney
35. Moses Mbye