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England’s World Cup hopes have been boosted by the news stand-off Gareth Widdop has returned to training with Melbourne Storm.
Widdop dislocated his hip while playing for the Storm against Gold Coast back in June and it looked as though he could be out for the rest of the year.
However the Halifax-born star has made a speedy recovery and was back in light training today, much to the delight of his club side and England ahead of the World Cup.
It is still too early to say when Widdop will return but the fact that he is back in training can only be good news at this stage.
Storm physio Tony Ayoub said: “Gaz is going fantastic. He’s started doing a bit of running and he’s chomping at the bit to get out there.
“We’ve not got clearance from the surgeon so we’re holding him back but you wouldn’t think he’s someone who has been out for nine weeks.”
The return of Widdop would be a huge boost for McNamara as well and he is hoping the player can get some game time with Melbourne before the season is out.
“Gareth had a meal with our physio Meirion Jones in Melbourne yesterday and it’s looking positive for him,” McNamara said.
“He’s obviously worked extremely hard to get into a position where he may be able to play before the season is finished.”
Meanwhile, McNamara is also hopeful of having the services of hooker James Roby, half-backs Danny McGuire and Richie Myler and second rower Jame Jones-Buchanan.