Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
We will weather injury storm, vows Bradford Bulls boss Mick Potter
Mick Potter has insisted the Bulls can cope with their latest crippling injury blow as they gear up for Monday’s clash with Castleford at Odsal.
Potter’s squad was dealt a massive setback after five players were reduced to the sidelines following Sunday’s Magic Weekend defeat to Leeds.
Adrian Purtell suffered a heart attack hours after the match, which looks certain to curtail his campaign and has raised question marks over whether he will play again.
Both men require operations, have been ruled out for three months and may not feature again this term, while Elliot Kear broke a bone in his wrist against the Rhinos and Chev Walker sustained a broken rib.
They are set for several weeks on the sidelines, leaving Potter short of options once more as his side prepare for their first game on home soil for more than six weeks.
Potter said: “The injuries have put a dent in the squad but we’ll fill the void, there’s no doubt about that.
“We were commenting a week or so ago that we were starting to get players back but then we lose five straight away in one match.
“We’re back to where we started from but it’s the nature of rugby league.
“It’s a contact sport and everyone knows the risks.
“It’s just happening to us a little too much at the moment.”
Potter acknowledged that the loss of two of his key pack men in Wales international Kopczak and joint-captain Diskin was a major blow.
“It’s unfortunate to lose two of our top-liners for at least three months,” he added.
“Kopczak’s ankle got caught after he was rolled back over by a couple of players and he needs an ankle operation.
“Diskin got flipped over and landed on his shoulder and he’ll need an operation as well.
“I’ve been very happy with the way Matt has played this season and Craig had come back strongly after a games out with a broken finger.
“But all the injuries give someone else an opportunity.”
Heath L’Estrange is poised to make his first start of the season on Monday and Danny Addy or Adam O’Brien will be named as the replacement hooker.
Tom Olibson and a fit-again Ian Sibbit will also come into contention and Jarrod Sammut is thought to be three or four weeks away from a return.