Briers set for Wolves return
Veteran stand-off Lee Briers is poised to return to the Warrington Wolves team this weekend after serving his punishment for a breach of club discipline.
The 33-year-old former Wales international was dropped for the Wolves' opening Stobart Super League match at Hull FC last Sunday for what coach Tony Smith called "a breach of protocol".
But Smith confirmed today Briers, the club's longest-serving player and record points-scorer, would be available to face London Broncos at the Halliwell Jones Stadium on Sunday.
"It was a breach of protocol in terms of preparation," Smith told a news conference. "That's as far as we want to go. You can speculate on the rest. The players have set themselves some pretty high levels.
"But he's handled it in the right manner. He made a mistake, a judgement error in the way that he prepares for matches and he put his hand up.
"We all make mistakes. All you can do is put your hand up and be prepared for the consequences.
"He'll go into the mix of selection this week. Whether he gets back in has got to be determined on how the rest of the team performed.
"He's certainly not been suspended for this week as well."
Briers' place against Hull was taken by new signing Stefan Ratchford, who had impressed on his appearance for the Wolves in their friendly against South Sydney at the end of the club's training camp in Australia.
Smith described some of his team's kicking during the 20-20 draw with Hull as "dreadful" and admitted they "lacked composure at times", which all points to a Briers recall.
The versatile Ratchford is certain to keep his place in Smith's 17-man squad, however, and could be used to provide back-up to hooker Michael Monaghan following the loss of Mickey Higham with a elbow injury.
"Mickey hyper-extended his elbow but we expect him only to miss this week," said Smith.
"There's a bit of fluid on it and we're going to give him a scan to make sure but the signs are that it's a minor one."
Winger Joel Monaghan, last year's leading tryscorer who sat out the opening fixture with a knee injury, is expected to return against the Broncos.