Melbourne’s superstar fullback Ryan Papenhuyzen will be sidelined for up to six weeks after suffering a hamstring tear and a posterior cruciate ligament injury in Sunday’s NRL win over St George Illawarra.
- The ailment could keep Papenhuyzen from making his State of Origin debut for the third straight season
- Papenhuyzen currently leads the Dally M count
- The Storm has been given approval for development squad member Marion Seve to be available for the top grade
In another blow, rangy centre Reimis Smith will have surgery after scans confirmed a ruptured pectoral muscle against the Dragons and he will be out for 10 to 12 weeks.
Papenhuyzen’s injury will again wreck his chances of making his State of Origin debut.
He was in the NSW squad in 2020 but couldn’t press for a position due to a calf injury and last year he was sidelined with ongoing concussion symptoms.
In scintillating form, Papenhuyzen is leading the Dally M Medal count but is also set to surrender that.
His place at fullback for their Magic Round top-of-the-table clash with champions Penrith on Saturday night has been taken by Nick Meaney.
Dean Ieremia will come on to the wing to cover Meaney while Marion Seve has been named to replace Smith in the centres.
Due to a large injury toll in the Storm’s outside backs, the club had to seek approval for Seve after he was relegated to the development squad following a serious knee injury in 2020 that curtailed his career.
The Samoan international managed two NRL games late last year.
Tui Kamikamica has been included on the reserves list for the first time this season after completing his nine-game suspension.
The Fijian-born prop was hit with an NRL breach notice after an off-field incident for bringing the game into disrepute.
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