Widnes coach Denis Betts has admitted that injuries and suspensions are crippling his team’s form.
He said: “we have obviously missed having that group of players on the pitch at the same time over the last few weeks.
“Hep has been one of our most consistent performers over the last two years, Gaz Hock is one of the best back-rowers in the game and we have missed Alex massively because of his work rate.
“Their presence and go-forward allows the backs to get on with their job.
“When you lose that bit of strike power and fear around your half-backs then you feel the pressure that little bit more.
“That is not to take anything away from the lads who have come into the side but you need these types of players who are willing to push themselves that little bit further because that is not really something you can coach.”
Cross, Cahill, Ah Van, Gerrard and Hock will all again be unavailable for Sunday’s visit of Catalan Dragons.