Leigh Leopards coach on Edwin Ipape injury timeframe and why they signed Brad Dwyer

Drew Darbyshire
Edwin Ipape Brad Dwyer Leigh Leopards Alamy

Leigh Leopards coach Adrian Lam has confirmed they will be without star hooker Edwin Ipape for up to two months due to a knee injury.

Papua New Guinea international Ipape suffered the injury in Leigh’s opening round defeat to Huddersfield Giants a fortnight ago, and will now be sidelined for up to six to eight weeks, according to his coach Lam.

“Edwin has ruptured his MCL, the ligament damage on the outside,” Lam said in his pre-match press conference ahead of Friday’s trip to St Helens.

“He’s walking on it now, there’s not much pain there, it’s one of those ones that you’ve just got to rest for a minimum of four weeks before you can start training again. He’ll be out between six and eight weeks, probably closer to eight weeks.”

Leigh Leopards bring in Brad Dwyer on loan as cover for the injured Edwin Ipape

As a result of Ipape’s injury, the Challenge Cup winners moved quickly to bring in experienced hooker Brad Dwyer on a short-term loan deal from neighbours Warrington Wolves.

Dwyer returned to Warrington on a two-year contract in the off-season but has not been selected by head coach Sam Burgess in their first two games of the season, with Burgess opting to go with Danny Walker and Sam Powell as his two main hookers.

“We’ve brought Brad Dwyer in on loan from Warrington for two weeks, we could have gone with someone locally here within the squad but I felt that was a really good opportunity for Brad to come over and ply his trade with us,” Lam said.

“I’m a fan of Brad, I know what he’s like as a person and as a player and I think he can do a really good job for us. That’s the immediate change up with our team, Brad adds a little bit of X-factor to us but it will take him a little bit of time to get the combinations within.

“They (Dwyer and Ipape) are different sorts of players but are very hungry, attacking players. Not many people have talked about it but as great as Edwin is an attacker, he is a very aggressive defender. Brad brings those smarts with him, he’s been around Super League a very long time and he’s creative so in that sense, they are very similar.

“Brad plays eyes up rugby and has got a good 1, 6, 7 and 13 around him who are very clever as well so hopefully he can slip straight into the system that Edwin was playing, I’ve got no doubts that he will.”

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