Dragons bailed after brawl

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The Independent Online

West Yorkshire Police said yesterday it could be two months before five Catalans Dragons players find out whether they are to face any charges connected to a street battle in Leeds city centre.

The five, plus four other men, were arrested after a brawl in the early hours of Monday morning. All were given bail yesterday and the Catalans players have rejoined their team-mates who had flown back to France without them.

They are now preparing for their next game, which is at Harlequins on Sunday, but it could be deep into the Super League season before a decision is made on whether to charge them. West Yorkshire Police warned that it could be a lengthy investigation and that they might not be called to answer bail and learn their fate for "a couple of months".

Huddersfield are still waiting to hear whether any of the six players arrested last month after rape allegations will be charged. The six have been bailed until 18 March.

St Helens have had mixed news over their early-season injury troubles. Saints, who lost their opening Super League fixture to Hull on Saturday, have learned that they are likely to be without their Test winger Ade Gardner for two months.

Gardner suffered multiple rib cartilage damage in the Hull game and will not even be able to train until the pain dies down. Saints will also be without their new signing, the New Zealand Test centre Sia Soliola, for at least a month after he damaged an ankle in his debut for his new club.

He is likely to be replaced at Bradford on Sunday by Chris Dean, thanks to the new system that allows players to be registered with two clubs. Dean is on loan to Widnes, but is able to be recalled by Saints. The snag is that he too is a doubtful starter, having injured a shoulder in training.

There were better tidings about the England prop James Graham, who has been cleared of a sternum injury and will play against the Bulls.

Michael McIlorum's bad luck with injury has continued with knee damage that could keep him out until April. The Wigan hooker suffered the injury in his comeback match after a lay-off with a wrist problem.

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