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Last Updated: Friday, 26 May 2006, 09:44 GMT 10:44 UK
Keeping the faith

By Dave Woods

Paul Wood
Wood suffered a big injury setback three years ago

Warrington prop Paul Wood reckons the power of positive thinking has turned round his side's season - and put him back in contention for a Great Britain spot.

In recent weeks, the Wolves have beaten Bradford and Leeds and pushed St Helens close while Wood's own impressive form has seen him drafted into the Great Britain squad for next month's one-off Test against New Zealand.

And all that after Warrington were written off at the start of the season as under-achievers.

"I think some people not connected to the club were panicking about our form because of one or two results," said Wood.

"But we just stayed calm. It's easy to say it now, but we always knew what we could do.

"We have a lot of good leaders at Warrington on and off the field, so we stayed relaxed and things have been working out for us. It was just a case of being positive."

It's great being involved with Britain but I'm trying not to look too far ahead. I need to keep focused on my form with Warrington.
Paul Wood

That recent run of results has got many pundits tipping Paul Cullen's side to make a big impression on the play-offs at the end of the season.

And Challenge Cup hopes are high, too, after a quarter-final draw paired them with National League side Hull Kingston Rovers.

Wood is also hoping this could finally be his year for full international honours after a disastrous first attempt to win a GB cap.

Three years ago, he was named in the Lions squad for a Test series against Australia only for injury to wreck his chances.

"I took a tackle in a warm-up game against New Zealand A and did my shoulder," he said.

"I was pretty upset at the time but you have to get used to the fact that these things happen.

"I decided to stay positive, you can't get depressed. I was only 21, so I felt my time would come again."

Last year, he shone for England, being named International player of the year for his country.

But now he is hoping to take the step up for Great Britain against New Zealand at the end of June as well as the Tri-Nations tournament down under in the Autumn.

"It's great being involved with Britain, meeting all the other players and learning from them.

"But I'm trying not to look too far ahead. I need to keep focused on my form with Warrington.

"At the moment, playing well for the club is the main thing."

Rauhihi injury blow for Wolves/NZ
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22 May 06 |  Challenge Cup
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