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Rugby, Australian Football: Rugby League: Deacon hopes for early return

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posted on May, 21 2003 @ 08:02 AM
Paul Deacon, the game's leading points scorer, is hopeful of playing for Bradford in Friday's showdown with Super League leaders Leeds after being cleared of serious eye damage.

The goalkicking scrum-half, who has amassed 168 points from 14 league and cup games, is still suffering from blurred vision as a result of an accidental collision with team-mate Jamie Peacock in Sunday's 52-6 win at Huddersfield.

Bulls football manager Stuart Duffy said: "Paul has been cleared of serious damage and a decision will be made on his fitness on Thursday."

Deacon is one of only two Bradford players to have started all their matches so far this season.

The other ever-present, Lesley Vainikolo, has reported fit after picking up ankle and leg injuries against Huddersfield and fellow winger Tevita Vaikona is also set to continue despite suffering back spasms on Sunday.

However, prop forward Rob Parker, who has been on the bench for all nine Super League games, is a major doubt for the Challenge Cup re-run after damaging ankle ligaments.

The Bulls will still be without prop Stuart Fielden and full-back Michael Withers, who were both absent from their cup-winning line-up, and stand-off Leon Pryce has one game left to serve of his two-match suspension.

Hooker James Lowes will return after being rested against Huddersfield.

Leeds' only concern is centre or second rower Chev Walker, who was their one absentee against Hull on Saturday after sustaining a shoulder injury against Wigan a fortnight ago.

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