The sight of Wigan hooker Michael McIlourm being stretchered off was an ominous one for the Warriors on Saturday.
It got even worse on Sunday when it was confirmed their influential hooker is set to miss six months of action after breaking and dislocating his ankle in the World Club Series defeat.
From the start of the season, Wigan have looked light at hooker. Sam Powell put in an admirable stint on Saturday after McIlorum’s departure, but he can’t be expected to do it alone all season. The only other recognised hooker in the Warriors squad is Luke Waterworth, who only recently was promoted to the first-team after playing in the under 19s and is expected to be out injured until April anyway.
It leaves Shaun Wane in an awkward predicament going forward, with the only viable option appearing to be a move into the transfer market.
However, it is understood that Wane might have already lined up a replacement in the shape of Leigh Centurions hooker Bob Beswick.
The Wigan-born number nine has been a notable absentee from the Leigh squad this season having yet to make an appearance.
He has been linked with the Warriors for some time now and has previously played under Wane during his teens. The two are thought to have great mutual respect for one another, too.
31-year-old Beswick played for Wigan over ten years ago, although he was released after a season in the first team.
But the lure of a return to his hometown club is one that is likely to appeal to Beswick as he enters the latter stages of his career.