St Helens boss Kristian Woolf gives latest injury update on Mark Percival ahead of crucial run of fixtures

The Saints centre has been sidelined with a leg injury since mid-May.

<p>Mark Percival</p>

Mark Percival

Head coach Kristian Woolf will have to tread a careful path as Super League champions St Helens prepare to face Leeds Rhinos and title rivals the Catalans Dragons, Wigan Warriors and Huddersfield Giants in the next few weeks.

Suspensions and injuries have plagued the Super League leaders for most of the season with centre Mark Percival, who is suffering from a leg injury, definitely out of Thursday’s Battle of the Roses against Leeds Rhinos at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

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He has not played any competitive football since the club’s 12-10 victory at Warrington in mid-May.

It is an injury, which will be monitored on a daily basis, and Woolf says he’s hopeful that the 28-year-old will be fit and raring to go for the trip to second-placed Catalans Dragons the following week.

But the Aussie admits it is not a cast iron certainty that Percival will feature in the top of the table clash.

Woolf said: “Mark has been suffering from a niggling injury for a number of weeks. We thought it might improve a bit quicker than we anticipated but it hasn’t.

“We are not going to take what would be a significant risk playing him on Thursday and it is a case of waiting to see how it comes along, but there is no guarantee that he will be available for the trip to France.”

Jonny Lomax and Morgan Knowles, who both missed the England international match, are expected to return to the fold but James Bell and Sione Mata’utia remain on the sidelines due to suspension.