Leuluai cleared of blame in Russell incident

Widnes forward Macgraff Leuluai has been cleared of any foul play in the incident that resulted in facial injuries to Warrington Wolves full-back Matty Russell.

Russell was knocked unconscious after spilling a high ball and colliding with Leuluai during the Wolves’ 22-19 Super League elimination play-off victory on Saturday.

Leuluai was not penalised for the incident and the Rugby Football League’s match-review panel have ruled that the player has no case to answer.

The panel’s ruling was that the “player makes legitimate attempt to tackle and makes contact direct to the head of opponent, however opponent is dipping while trying to re-gather ball”.

The match was held up for 10 minutes so that Russell could be treated on the pitch and he was taken straight to hospital amid fears of a serious injury.

However, the 21-year-old Scotland international allayed those fears on Twitter on Saturday night and today Warrington announced that the scan results showed there was no fracture to the jaw or skull.

Russell has had two front teeth removed and will be forced to miss his club’s preliminary semi-final at Castleford Tigers on Thursday, when Warrington coach Tony Smith is expected to switch the versatile Stefan Ratchford to full-back.

Catalan Dragons will be at full strength for their preliminary semi-final at Huddersfield Giants on Friday after centre Vincent Duport and forward Louis Anderson were both cleared of any wrongdoing during their side’s 24-20 win at Leeds Rhinos.

Both players were penalised for late tackles on Leeds skipper Kevin Sinfield and Rhinos coach Brian McDermott argued that foul play was involved.