John­son out for 6-8 weeks

The Southland Times - - SPORT - RUGBY LEAGUE

Shaun John­son is ex­pected to be side­lined from rugby league for six to eight weeks af­ter scans re­vealed his knee in­jury was not as se­ri­ous as first thought.

The star New Zealand War­riors half­back was di­ag­nosed with a rup­tured pos­te­rior cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment in his left knee which won’t re­quire surgery, the club said in a state­ment yes­ter­day.

With seven rounds left in the Na­tional Rugby League sea­son it still leaves John­son in se­ri­ous doubt to play any more games for the Auck­land club in 2017, but his prospects of fea­tur­ing for the Ki­wis at the World Cup in New Zealand and Aus­tralia start­ing on Oc­to­ber 27 ap­pear much brighter.

Ini­tial di­ag­no­sis sug­gested the 26-year-old may have suf­fered sea­son-end­ing dam­age to the an­te­rior cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment when he fell the ground in agony early in the sec­ond half of the War­riors’ 34-22 de­feat to Pen­rith on Fri­day night, which saw them slip to 11th on the lad­der.

‘‘This is a much bet­ter out­come than we had ex­pected,’’ War­riors team doc­tor John May­hew said.

‘‘We had be­lieved the in­jury was likely to be an ACL but scans have in­di­cated this isn’t so and Shaun won’t need sur­gi­cal in­ter­ven­tion to re­pair the in­jury.’’

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