Dragons coach Anthony Griffin has declared Jack Hen a sure starter for his facet’s season opener because the Pink V get able to welcome again 12 of their stars for subsequent week’s Charity Protect towards South Sydney.
Hen went down with a knee harm earlier this month and underwent minor surgical procedure to wash up his meniscus, however Griffin says the setback isn’t as dangerous as first feared with the utility unlikely to overlook any NRL motion after a wretched few years.
A primary spherical bye means Hen has even longer to recuperate, with the Dragons not scheduled to play till the ultimate recreation of the second week once they host the Titans.
“He’ll be prepared for our spherical 1,” Griffin mentioned.
“He clearly gained’t play subsequent week towards Souths, nevertheless it was a minor cleanup on his meniscus so he’ll be prepared for the primary NRL recreation.”
It’s an enormous increase for a Dragons facet that can welcome again a dozen gamers subsequent week after they had been no match for St Helens of their first pre-season problem match on Saturday evening.
The 30-18 loss flattered the hosts who had been lacking a stack of expertise throughout the park, however they need to have nearly everybody again subsequent week aside from Hen and Jack de Belin, who’s coping with a calf grievance.
“He hasn’t acquired a tear,” Griffin revealed.
“It’s just a bit bit weak on him for the time being so we’ll simply deal with it with quite a lot of warning. If we had been in season and it was an necessary recreation then he’d play, however presently of 12 months we gained’t threat him.”
In additional excellent news, Jayden Sullivan is ready to play subsequent week after struggling a hamstring harm at coaching a number of weeks in the past, with the younger playmaker to associate skipper Ben Hunt within the halves.
Their creativity and a few further area created by the returning forwards ought to present extra alternatives for strike centres Zac Lomax and Moses Suli who managed simply 4 runs between them on Saturday evening.
The pair solely performed the primary half with Lomax starved of any ball, restricted to only one run which ended up being a strive when he backed up a Ben Murdoch-Masila break.
The largest shock was seeing Lomax on the left and Suli on the correct, and Griffin says that the experiment might proceed into the season with the veteran coach eager to see them get early ball subsequent week.
“Zac completed the 12 months on the left final 12 months, and so they can each play both facet so we wished to take a look at that within the first half,” he mentioned.
“We knew that they had been solely going to play half a recreation, and I assumed they had been each robust. We’ll see the way it goes.
“I assumed it was arduous for each of them with our halves not having that further little bit of time.
“It was arduous to execute after we wanted to, and we in all probability simply wanted to present them some earlier ball, notably on final play a number of instances. I assumed they each did a very good job.”