Surgery may keep Benji from NZ squad - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Surgery may keep Benji from NZ squad

03/10/2005 09:09:21 PM Comments (0)

Wests Tigers premiership five-eighth Benji Marshall has been named in New Zealand's Tri Nations squad - but coach Brian McClennan won't know the star's availability until Tuesday.

Marshall sparked the Tigers' 30-16 NRL grand final victory over North Queensland at Telstra Stadium on Sunday night.

But McClennan has grave concerns that Marshall will opt for shoulder surgery that will sideline him for six months and rule him out of the series that also features Australia and Great Britain.

Marshall had kept his Tri Nations options open throughout the season despite nursing a shoulder injury.

But he was still named in a 40-strong squad that included players for their senior and New Zealand A campaigns.

The NZ A team will play the Junior Kangaroos as a curtainraiser to the first Tri Nations Test on October 15 at Telstra Stadium.

It had been hoped that Marshall would make himself available for at least the Tri Nations opener against Australia.

McClennan said he would speak to Marshall on Tuesday.

"It's important for him to either rule himself in or rule himself out," he said.

Asked if he believed Marshall would opt for surgery, McClennan said: "It's looking that way."

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