St Helens confirm Sione Mata’utia injury as Kristian Woolf names squad for Hull KR match

The Saints forward could be out for up to three weeks with a foot injury.

<p>Sione Mata'utia will miss the gameagainst Hull KR. (Picture: SWPix.com)</p>

Sione Mata'utia will miss the gameagainst Hull KR. (Picture: SWPix.com)

Saints will be striving to strengthen their grip on top spot in the Betfred Super League when they entertain Hull KR on Friday night and having won their last 12 outings against the Humbersiders they will obviously start as firm favourites.

But no one in the camp will be under-estimating Danny McGuire’s side, even though injuries and suspensions have hit them hard.

St Helens, too, haven’t exactly escaped scot-free with Sione Mata’utia pulling out due to a foot injury.

Head coach Kristian Woolf said: “We are hoping he will only be absent for two matches but it could be three weeks. At the same time ,we are not going to take any risks with him.’’

However, the defending champions confirmed that Jack Welsby, who missed the trip to Hull after picking up a couple of bangs in the Castleford game, will return to the fold, while Lewis Baxter and Taylor Pemberton come into the squad in place of Mata’utia and the suspended Morgan Knowles.

Saints squad: 1. Jack Welsby, 2. Tommy Makinson, 3. Will Hopoate, 6. Jonny Lomax, 8. Alex Walmsley, 9. James Roby, 10. Matty Lees, 12. Joe Batchelor, 14. Joey Lussick, 15. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook,, 17. Agnatius Paasi, 19. Jake Wingfield, 20. James Bell, 21. Josh Simm, 22. Ben Davies, 23. Konrad Hurrell, 24. Dan Norman, 26. Sam Royle, 27. Jon Bennison, 28. Lewis Baxter, 31. Taylor Pemberton.

Hull KR: 1. Lachlan Coote,5. Ryan Hall, 8. Albert Vete,10. George King,12. Kane Linnett,13. Matty Storton,14. Jez Litten,17. Elliot Minchella,18. Jimmy Keinhorst, 20. Mikey Lewis, 21. Rowan Milnes, 22. Will Maher, 24. Sam Wood,27. Frankie Halton, 28. Will Tate 29. Phoenix Laulu-Togaga’e, 31. Connor Moore, 34. Zach Fishwick, 38. Connor Barley.