Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

Sharks Hit by Injuries

Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

Sharks Hit by Injuries

Article excerpt

Byline: Todd Balym

LESS than two weeks out from the opening round of the NRL, Cronulla's season is in disarray with fears skipper Paul Gallen and star recruit Reni Maitua could be sidelined for several weeks due to injury.

Gallen and Maitua were both carried from the field as the Sharks claimed a last-gasp 14-10 win over Newcastle in Cessnock on Saturday night.

Gallen is believed to have hyper-extended his knee while Maitua aggravated an old ankle injury.

Both will have scans today that will decide if the Test duo are any chance of playing the season-opener against Penrith at Toyota Stadium on March 14, however it is likely both will be ruled out.

Fellow Test backrower and marquee recruit Anthony Tupou was concussed in the dour clash and suffered a minor neck injury, but is not in doubt for the Panthers round one meeting.

Sharks coach Ricky Stuart could shed no further light on the injury situation at his club yesterday but knows the potential loss of the duo is a massive blow considering they released utility Fraser Anderson last week to Japanese rugby union.

Despite the injury setbacks Sharks five-eighth Trent Barrett said the side had taken another step forward after their 40-10 loss to the Gold Coast in Darwin last week.

"We got what we needed out of it. Our ball security was a bit down - as was theirs - but it was pretty slippery," Barrett said.

"Obviously we need to pick our completion rates up but it was better again than Darwin, and good to get a win too, albeit on the bell. It was a nice finish."

The Sharks are not the only club with injury concerns, Canberra prop Scott Logan (ankle) in doubt for the season start after going down in the Raiders' 24-16 loss to the Bulldogs.

South Sydney skipper Roy Asotasi said he would start the NRL season wearing protective headgear after copping a nasty head wound in the Rabbitohs' 18-6 Charity Shield win over St George Illawarra. …

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