O'Loughlin returns to boost Wigan in semi-final

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The Independent Online

Wigan could have their influential captain and loose forward, Sean O'Loughlin, back for their Challenge Cup semi-final against Warrington on Saturday.

O'Loughlin has missed Wigan's recent revival in Super League with a knee injury, but will probably be given until the day before the match to prove his fitness. "We've been going all right without him, but he's a world-class player," said his coach, Brian Noble. "He will only play if he's fully fit."

Opponents Warrington will recall Chris Riley in place of Brian Carney, who fractured his lower arm at Leeds last weekend. "Chris was probably unlucky to be left out last week, but he handled it very professionally and gets his chance again now," said the Wolves' coach, Tony Smith. He is also without the utility back Simon Grix, with a dislocated shoulder from the same match, but Matt King is fit to return after a hamstring strain.

The Warrington second-rower Ben Westwood says he knows nothing of reports that he is on the move to Bradford. "Last week it was Leeds, now it's Bradford," he said. "I've got two more years here. I'm happy and, unless they want to get rid of me, I'm staying here."

Leigh, struggling in the lower reaches of the Co-operative Championship, have signed Robbie Paul from Salford on a two-year contract, starting next season, and have not given up hope of recruiting his elder brother, Henry, who is playing rugby union for Leeds.

Castleford have cut their ties with Sione Faumuina, who has been dogged by problems and has gone home to Australia before completing a season with the club. The Tigers have, however, agreed a two-year contract extension with James Evans and a new, one-year deal with Michael Wainwright.