St Helens make James Bell appeal decision ahead of Wigan Warriors derby

Aaron Bower

St Helens will appeal the one-match suspension handed to forward James Bell at a tribunal tonight, Love Rugby League can confirm.

Bell was banned for one game on Monday following a Grade B Dangerous Contact charge after an incident in the first half of the Saints‘ Challenge Cup victory over Leeds Rhinos last Friday. It meant he would potentially miss this Friday’s huge derby with Wigan Warriors as a result.

However, the Saints have confirmed that they will be lodging an appeal and heading to a tribunal on Tuesday evening in a bid to free Bell up to feature in arguably the biggest game of the season so far.

Any successful appeal would be a huge boost for Paul Wellens and his side, given the importance Bell has had on the Saints in 2024. He has become an increasingly influential member of the Saints’ attack, proving an effective replacement for Morgan Knowles from the interchange bench.

The Scotland international has earned rave reviews for his performances this year so far, including from his own coach. However, the news of his suspension on Monday was a major blow for the Saints in their preparations ahead of the derby.

But they will attempt to overturn that one-match ban tonight and try to free Bell up to feature against Wigan.

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