By ISAAC LIRI
PAPUA New Guinea Kumul coach Michael Marum is positive that playmaker Ase Boas will be ready for their rugby league World Cup campaign.
With just 10 days remaining before their first game against Wales, the news that the five-eighth had injured his left knee during the Tri-Nations last weekend, sent alarm bells ringing but Marum said he was confident his vice-captain would be able to play.
The 28-year-old was rested towards the end of the Kumuls’ opening Tri-Nations fixture against Fiji in Suva last Saturday.
Marum said scans revealed the injury was not as serious as initially feared.
“The report came through yesterday after the scans that he will be fine. We’re hopeful that he’ll be alright for the world cup because he is a key player,” Marum said.
“The doctors gave him three days to rest until the team assembles on Friday.”
Marum said Boas was not just a leader and player-maker but his goal-kicking was crucial.
“It would be a blow if we lose him. We have enough halves to cover but we would miss his goal kicking.”
“We’re staying positive and we know that he’s had a long season with the Hunters and he has been playing with injuries throughout the year so hopefully he recovers in time for our first game.
“It’s a big ask for a player to stay fit throughout the season but we‘re hopeful Ase will be right.”
Meanwhile, Marum spoke highly of young halves pairing Watson Boas and Lachlan Lam.
“Both performed well and looked promising and I think that is what we need.
“Young players coming up and doing well with the opportunity they get.”
Other players that are recovering from minor injuries but are expected to be ready by Oct 28 are centre Nene Macdonald (knee), hjooker James Segeyaro, (hand) and Rod Griffin (knee).
The Kumuls squad returned home to their families before returning to camp on Friday.
By ISAAC LIRI