Canberra Raiders veteran centre Jarrod Croker has been ruled out of the Round 12 clash on Sunday afternoon against the Parramatta Eels with a dislocated shoulder.
A statement from the club confirmed his return would be put on hold, with the club captain now to have scans which will determine if he requires surgery.
"Canberra Raiders Captain Jarrod Croker will not play in the Raiders round 12 match against the Eels after dislocating his shoulder on Tuesday," the club statement read.
"Croker was set to make his return to the field this weekend after injuring his shoulder against the Bulldogs in round 9.
"He will have scans in the coming days to determine the extent of the injury and see if it requires surgery."
Croker, who had career-saving stem cell surgery on his knee during the off-season, has played just a single game in the NRL this season against the Bulldogs in Round 9.
After a strong performance on his return, Croker injured his shoulder in the final minutes of the game as he raced to stop a potential Matt Dufty try.
The injury put him back on the sidelines for a fortnight, however, the new injury could place into question his ability to return this season, pending on the results of the scan and whether surgery is needed.
According to The Canberra Times, Croker sustained the injury on Tuesday night after teams had been named, rather than at training as had been first thought.
Croker, who has 292 NRL games, was looking for a run in the team to approach 300 games, however, that progress will now be denied.
It's tipped Sebastian Kris, who is on the bench, will come into the starting side, while one of Harry Rushton, Corey Harawira-Naera or Matt Frawley will come onto the bench, pending on the balance coach Ricky Stuart wants to carry into the game.
Interesting. 292 games, of which only one is from this season. Out again, for what looks like it will be a long time. I’d suggest it’s time for him to retire on medical grounds.
However, he has a contract until the end of 2023, then a Player Option for 2024. (Well negotiated !) I wonder what happens if Canberra want to retire him. Obviously, they would pay him out for the rest of this season, and I guess for 2023 as well, but what would happen if he says “I want to exercise my PO”.
Would Canberra have to pay him for that, or are NRL contracts structured to prevent that from happening? Anyone know?
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