GIANTS’ Australian star Luke O’Donnell will not face Warrington Wolves in Sunday’s Challenge Cup semi-final.
The 31-year-old forward has been counted out of the clash at the City of Salford Stadium with an unspecified injury.
Giants head coach Nathan Brown, who aims to take the club to their second final under his guidance after being beaten at Wembley by the Wolves in 2009, said: “Luke will not be playing unfortunately.”
O’Donnell, a veteran of 10 Australian Tests, was in the Giants team that succumbed to a 52-6 Super League defeat at Castleford.
“Sadly Luke is a bit of a loss because he is obviously an important player for us,” said Brown, who answered ‘no comment’ when asked the nature of the injury.
“However, Luke hasn’t been able to play for us as much as we wanted, but sometimes we have played better when we have lacked some of our big name players.”
However, the Giants will be lifted by the return from England duty of forward Eorl Crabtree, who was rested for the Castleford game having sustained a finger injury playing against the Exiles at the Galpharm Stadium, and leading try scorer Luke George will be checked again to ensure he is fit to play after suffering concussion against the Tigers.
“We will give Luke George a test later just to see how he is going,” said Brown.
“But obviously Eorl comes back into the equation after playing for England and he is now fit again.”
And Brown is confident the Giants have the players to take on the Wolves and said: “We have got a number of players pushing for a place. We are not 100 per cent sure of how we will line up on the day, but we have the players to make us confident that we can do the job.”