Sydney Roosters Training Session
Sam Verrills had joined the team from the Sydney Roosters. (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

The Gold Coast Titans have been dealt an early blow during pre-season, with highly-rated new recruit Sam Verrills suffering a shoulder injury during training.

Though the news comes as a blow to coach Justin Holbrook's pre-season plans, Verrills has already undergone minor surgery and is expected to return to full-contact training in the new year.

At this point in the process, the club still expects Verrills to be fit and healthy come their Round 1 clash against West Tigers at Leichhardt Oval, per a club release.

Verrills started the 2022 campaign in similar fashion, missing the first five games of the season after breaking his thumb at training.

That bad luck only continued, with Verrills missing game time for the Roosters after suffering a broken collarbone in Round 9 – ironically, against the Titans. That recovery took him just six weeks, and the Titans will be hoping for a similar road back to fitness this time around.

In 2020 he suffered a season-ending ACL injury, and in 2021 he caught headlines after playing with a semi-detached retina that could have resulted in permanent eye damage and required surgery to ‘glue' the retina back down.

Though injuries have so far limited Verrills to no more than 15 games in an NRL season, his experience with recovery should give the club confidence.

The injury also underlines the importance of the club's recent decision to trade players with Newcastle, releasing winger Greg Marzhew to the Knights and securing more depth at dummy-half with the addition of Chris Randall.