Super League: Wigan Warriors captain Sean O'Loughlin ruled out for month
Last Updated: 04/09/13 2:22pm
Sean O'Loughlin: Expected to be fit in time for World Cup
Wigan's preparations for the Super League play-offs have been dealt a huge blow after Sean O'Loughlin was ruled out for at least a month.
Scan have revealed that the loose forward suffered a torn Achilles tendon during the Challenge Cup final victory over Hull, but he is expected to be fit in time to feature for England in the World Cup starting next month.
Wigan v Leeds
O'Loughlin, who had been struggling with a calf strain in recent weeks, will now wear a protective surgical boot for four weeks before his injury is reassessed.
Warriors Shaun Wane admitted the news was a blow, but he is hopeful that O'Loughlin could be fit in time for the Grand Final on October 5 if Wigan reach the showpiece.
"He'll be in a pot for four weeks and won't know how he is until he gets that off," Wane said. "We've not 100% ruled him out of everything and, if we are lucky enough to get to the Grand Final, he will have a chance of that.
"He looks after himself and, knowing the way he responds, if anyone can get back, he can. It is a blow but we will have to win games without him, which we have this year.
"We've not 100% ruled him out of everything and, if we are lucky enough to get to the Grand Final, he will have a chance of that."
Wane on O'Loughlin
"It's not a death in the family. If he doesn't play again this year, it will be an opportunity for someone else. He's a great player but we have other great players in our team to compensate."
O'Loughlin is expected to be named in the 2013 Super League Dream Team when it is announced on Monday, and he is a certainty to be included in Steve McNamara's England squad for the World Cup if he is passed fit.
But Wane warned that O'Loughlin should not be considered for the tournament if he suffers any setbacks in his recovery.
"If I'm convinced 100%, then I'm okay with it," Wane said. "He wants to play for his country, he's very proud."
Wigan will also be without Wales prop Gil Dudson, who has a minor shoulder
injury, for Thursday's final game of the regular season against Leeds at the DW Stadium.
You can watch Wigan take on Leeds at the DW Stadium live on Sky Sports 2HD on Thursday at 8pm