Leeds Rhinos star ruled out of Grand Final but could be fit for World Cup

Woman of Steel nominee Georgia Roche could be available for the World Cup, but will definitely miss this week’s Betfred Women’s Super League Grand Final, Leeds Rhinos coach Lois Forsell has confirmed.
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Roche won the top individual accolade in the women’s game four years ago and has been nominated this season, but is currently on Rhinos’ casualty list.

She was hurt last month in a league defeat by York City Knights, who Rhinos play in Sunday’s title decider at St Helens and Forsell said: “She is still in a boot.

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“She broke her foot and after the York game we knew she’d be four-to-five weeks in a boot. She is looking forward to hopefully being present at the World Cup.

Rhinos' Georgia Roche. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.Rhinos' Georgia Roche. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.
Rhinos' Georgia Roche. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.

“She’s working hard with the medical staff at Leeds and England to give herself the best chance to get back and be playing in the World Cup come November.”

Roche is a huge loss, but Forsell is confident of having other players back for the final.

She said: “We’re getting back to the point where we’ve got players we can leave out.

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Rhinos coach Lois Forsell. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.Rhinos coach Lois Forsell. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.
Rhinos coach Lois Forsell. Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.
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“It was kind of a different picture when we played Saints in the semi-final because in the middle of the week we were looking at going with 16 or 15.

People pulled through and we managed to get a 17 out there and 18 in our squad. This week we have got players coming back so it is going to be a selection headache.

“It is tough as a coach to have those conversations and make those decisions, but as a team it is what you need going into a Grand Final.”

Another England player, Keara Bennett, is back in contention after missing the semi-final, Tasha Gaines could also feature this week and Shannon Lacey is available after a bang to a knee against St Helens.

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“There’s some people coming back in who were unavailable due to other commitments, like Ellie Frain, Ellie Johnson and Adaoha Akwiwu,” Forsell added.

“There’s a lot more bodies in and around training heading into the Grand Final, so it is a tough call to make.”