Grant Ward and Sullay Kaikai suffer knocks during Blackpool's magnificent win against Sunderland, but Kevin Stewart returns from lay-off

Neil Critchley admits it’s too soon to know the prognosis of the knocks Grant Ward and Sullay Kaikai suffered during Blackpool’s win against Sunderland last night.

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 10:22 am

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Kaikai was the first to hobble off the pitch in the 70th minute, having scored the stunning winning goal just 14 minutes before.

Ward, who was in exceptional form in the middle of the park alongside Kenny Dougall and Ethan Robson, also limped off during stoppage-time.

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When asked about the knocks after the full-time whistle, Critchley said: “Sullay said he was feeling his hamstring a little bit.

“We never know until we see how he is tomorrow and see how he’s feeling, but hopefully it’s nothing too serious and it’s just a bit of fatigue.

“As for Wardy, I think he’s still on the pitch now running around, he was incredible, wasn’t he? Just incredible.

“He felt his Achilles a little bit. There were a few walking wounded because of the physical efforts they put in, so fingers crossed over the next 24 to 48 hours the players can recover.

Kaikai felt his hamstring after scoring Blackpool's winning goal at the Stadium of Light

“Then we’ll have to think about what we do for Saturday.”

Ward was replaced by Kevin Stewart on his return from a six-week absence, having recovered from an ankle injury he suffered during the goalless draw against Fleetwood Town in March.

“It’s a big boost to have him back, it’s great to have his experience and leadership around the place,” Critchley added.

“He’s a good communicator, so I’m delighted he’s back and he’ll be ready to play a part in the last few games if needed.”

Losing Ward and Kaikai would be a major blow given the Seasiders are already without a number of players through injury, especially in the forward areas.

Daniel Gretarsson, Matty Virtue, Keshi Anderson, CJ Hamilton and Gary Madine all remain sidelined, while Bez Lubala is still unavailable due to a 'club matter'.

Loanee Elliot Embleton will come back into the fold for Saturday's trip to Northampton Town after missing out against his parent club Sunderland last night.

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