He is currently sidelined with a rare blood disorder, that has prevented him from both playing and partaking in heavy training, but sidelined Storm centre Will Chambers received some positive news – with a call from former Souths and Penrith coach, John Lang.
Lang, who is a premiership winner, called Chambers and told him that his own song and former Penrith and Shark Martin Lang, suffered the same disorder as a teenager – before going on to play in 176 NRL games, and make 8 State of Origin appearances.
Chambers, who has not played an NRL game since Round 13 against the Warriors, which was when he first noticed a rash, diagnosed as idiopathic thrombocytopenia – a rare blood disorder that could have led to internal bleeding as a result of any physical contact.
With Chamber’s blood levels being closely monitored, the positive news is that he has partaken in some light training earlier than expected, giving the club hope that he can make a return before the finals.
With Lang having suffered a previous injury, the hope that Chambers can return earlier has been renewed – with the former QLD prop having contracted the rare disorder, following a bout of glandular fever.
“I had to take about half a season off, but I was back towards the end of the season,” Lang said.
“Coming back to first grade for Will could be difficult, but I’m not saying he couldn’t do it. He would be physically in better condition than I was beforehand, too. He’ll be getting his blood levels checked regularly.”
Frank Ponissi, the Storm’s Football Operations Manager said that the spirit of Chambers had risen since the phone call, but that the club is yet to set a return date on his injury, despite their recent back-line crisis.
“John spoke to Will and went over what Martin went through. He basically then played his entire senior career with the disorder and Martin Lang played one way, 100 miles an hour,” Ponissi said.
“Will took a lot of encouragement out of that. A lot of people have contacted the club who have had the illness.
“But it’s not until you find another sportsperson, let alone another rugby league person like Martin Lang, it sinks in.”