Sea Eagles sensation Tom Trbojevic is likely to miss the 2022 State of Origins series opener next month after dislocating his shoulder against Parramatta on Friday night.
The Dally M Medal winner suffered the setback in a second-half tackle that forced the Manly star to require medical attention on the sidelines, with Trbojevic's left arm held in a sling.
The 64th-minute incident has further soured Trbojevic's injury-riddled run, having missed a month of action earlier this season due to a medial tear in his knee.
The 25-year-old was already out to prove his fitness and form ahead of the June 8 Origin opener at Accor Stadium, however his latest ailment is expected to put a line through his New South Wales prospects for Game I.
After the two-point loss to Parramatta, Manly coach Des Hasler confirmed his fullback had suffered a dislocated shoulder in his try-saving tackle, but couldn't clarify the full extent of the injury.
"It's a dislocated shoulder," Hasler said.
"We won't be able to determine the extent of the damage until the scans are done."
Concern for Tom Trbojevic is for left shoulder subluxation/dislocation with textbook mechanism landing on outstretched arm. As usual varied prognosis here. If minimal damage/joint stable, 3-6 week return. Any significant damage or instability, surgery + 3-6 months recovery pic.twitter.com/k1yuU40hEt
— NRL PHYSIO (@nrlphysio) May 20, 2022
Hasler expressed his empathy for Trbojevic, with his latest setback likely to see the Mona Vale product sidelined for multiple weeks.
"He'll be bitterly disappointed, he takes it very hard," Hasler added. "He blames himself a lot.
"He's just having one of those runs at the moment. He'll bounce back."
While the Blues and Brad Fittler will look to shuffle their magnets at the back ahead of their first squad selection, the Sea Eagles will also be forced into a major change to their system as they look to bounce back into the top half of the ladder.
Friday's 22-20 loss to the Eels sees Hasler's side remain outside of the top eight after 11 rounds, with their winless run not getting any easier as they travel to AAMI Park to face the Storm next Thursday.