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Hooker's most consistent Warrington Wolves run comes despite two wrist breaks
Micky Higham sports the heavy wrist strapping that has enabled him to play through his recovery from two wrist breaks
MICKY Higham has revealed that he has been playing for much of the season with two wrist breaks.
The 31-year-old hooker has been enjoying his most consistent run in the starting 13 since his arrival in 2009 – due in part to the prolonged recovery of Michael Monaghan from knee surgery – making seven starts and three substitute appearances in 2012.
But the run has come at a cost, with the former Wigan and St Helens star playing through the pain of injuries he has been carrying since early March.
“I am doing it the tough way at the moment,” he said.
“I just want to play for this club and I have had the opportunity to get some game time, so I have taken it.
“I am not going to worry about the pain. I am going to strap it up, get a few needles here and there and get on with the job.
“There have been two breaks in them this season, but they have healed up now and they are strapped up as a precaution.”
Higham’s admission is a reminder of the extreme pressures rugby league players’ bodies are put under on an almost daily basis.
This week’s trip to Catalan Dragons in the Challenge Cup represents another do-or-die scenario, that will inspire many players to forget their aches and pains and put their bodies on the line.
It is well known that players are regularly called upon to play through injuries, but usually these instances are played down to try and minimise the risk of opposition players targeting the supposed ‘weak link’.
For Higham and so many others in the sport this is part and parcel of everyday life, but the former England international admitted that if it was not for the desire and mental strength of players dedicated to their team, many clubs would struggle to field an eligible side.
“There aremore than me, playing through the pain,” he said.
“If you could peek in our dressing room on a game day, it is scary what the players put themselves through, with strapping and the patching up of injuries just to get through a game.
“But that is the kind of people we are.
“It will probably take its toll in later life, but you worry about that later.
“As soon as you get the kit on and you step over the whitewash you forget about the injury and the pain. It is just us versus them.”