Rugby League


NRL trial: Canberra Raiders fullback Jack Wighton fine to play Newcastle Knights

Canberra Raiders fullback Jack Wighton says he'll be fine to play in Saturday's NRL trial at Wade Park, putting what he called "the worst five minutes of my NRL career" behind him.

Wighton was hit in a heavy collision while attempting to score a try in the NRL All Stars clash at Suncorp Stadium last Saturday, leaving the field dazed with more than half the game remaining.

A precautionary move, Wighton didn't return for the Indigenous All Stars in their 12-8 loss to the World All Stars, but says he's confident of passing a concussion test on Friday morning and lining up for the Green Machine's only 13-a-side trial of the 2016 pre-season against the Newcastle Knights.

"I've had no dramas, no headaches, I should be all good," Wighton said at his old school, the Canobolas Rural Technology High School, on Thursday.

"I haven't trained too much since the game. I've had a couple of niggly corks and that in the couple of minutes I've played.

"I think it's the worst five minutes of my NRL career, but all is well."


Saturday's trial against the Knights will be Wighton's first game at Wade Park since his University Shield days with Canobolas in 2009.

Having gone on to play at the top level with Canberra, represent NSW Country, the Indigenous All Stars and the Prime Minister's XIII in Papua New Guinea, the 23-year-old had a simple message for his Canobolas alumni during the Raiders' community carnival visit.

"I guess it just puts things into perspective," the dynamic fullback said. "It doesn't matter where you're from or what school you go to. If you try your best you've got a chance of making it anywhere in life.

"It's great [to be back in Orange]. I'm excited. The boys are loving the town and, I guess, seeing where I'm from. I think it's good to be back home."

He said the side was looking forward to its first outing together after what he described as an intense pre-season with coach Ricky Stuart.

"I think it's going to be good to have a run. We usually have two or three trials but we've only got the one. We'll field the best team that's not injured and see how good we get things to stick," the Bloomfield and Orange CYMS product said.

"I hope [there's a big crowd]. Hopefully the town gets around it and a few from out west come in for it. We should get a good show."

The Raiders tackle the Knights at Wade Park from 6.30pm on Saturday.