Matty Russell: Warrington full-back escapes serious injury

Matty Russell
Russell was taken off on a stretcher after extensive medical treatment on the pitch

Warrington full-back Matty Russell has escaped serious injury but had two front teeth removed after a heavy hit in the play-off win over Widnes.

The 21-year-old collided with Vikings forward Macgraff Leuluai and received treatment for 10 minutes on the pitch.

Russell left the game on a stretcher and was taken to hospital with concussion and a broken nose.

But Warrington have since confirmed that Russell has no fractures to the skull or jaw after a scan.

Russell spilled a high ball and was trying to regather possession when the onrushing Leuluai caught him with a challenge which appeared to knock him unconscious.

"It's not a great position for Matty to be in - there was a lot of concern for him," Warrington coach Tony Smith told BBC Sport after the match.

Matty Russell on Twitterexternal-link:
"I know Macgraff personally and he's not that type of lad and isn't that type of player. It's a tough sport and things happen like this"

Joel Monaghan scored a hat-trick in the game as Wolves battled back from 18-0 down to end Widnes' first Super League play-off campaign.

Last year's Grand Final runners-up now progress to a preliminary semi-final eliminator against Castleford on Thursday.

"We were pretty ordinary in the first half." hooker Michael Monaghan told BBC Radio Merseyside.

"We knew if we could get some possession and just sharpen up a few of the things we were poor with in the first-half we'd give ourselves a chance. We caught up pretty quick and then it was a matter of holding on.

"Luckily enough we've got some skilful players on our edges and they were able to get us over the line, but we did just enough.

"We've given ourselves another crack next week, we're going to have to perform better than we did here, but we're confident we can do that."

  • Highlights from the opening matches of the 2014 Super League play-offs, including Warrington v Widnes, are available on BBC iPlayer (UK users only) until 27 September 2014