Kimmorley 'may return' during NRL finals - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Kimmorley 'may return' during NRL finals

31/08/2009 05:41:50 PM Comments (0)

The Bulldogs are counting on injured playmaker Brett Kimmorley being back on deck for week three of the finals, but the ladder-leaders will be forced to win at least one finals match without him if they are to go all the way to the NRL premiership.

Scans on Monday night revealed three fractures to Kimmorley's cheekbone following a head clash with Warriors centre Jerome Ropati at ANZ Stadium on Sunday, with an estimated rehabilitation of one month.

That would leave Kimmorley racing the clock to be back for the preliminary finals on the weekend of September 25-26, but the Bulldogs would still need to win in either week one or two of the finals to get that far.

"It's disappointing but certainly, we've given ourselves to a great opportunity to be there at the back end of the year so I've got no doubt we'll still see Brett Kimmorley on the field," Bulldogs coach Kevin Moore said.

"(Week three) is realistic.

"We've had some good news in that regard.

"It could have been better but it could have been a lot worse so, the positive thing is we get the operation done tomorrow, start his recovery and we'll see him back on the field through the finals."

Asked how Kimmorley was feeling, Moore said: "He's in much better spirits today.

"I think yesterday he was thinking that it might have been the season for him.

"But he said after seeing the surgeon this morning he was feeling really positive and he's just focusing on making sure he can get as much recovery as he can and get back on deck for us."

Moore confirmed Daniel Holdsworth was set to wear the No.7 in the club's final round match against Wests Tigers on Friday night, which they must win to claim the minor premiership.

Holdsworth has started just one match at halfback this season, in round 18 against the Warriors when Kimmorley was away in camp with the NSW Origin side, but has been a regular at training and has played 11 matches all up this season, most of them coming off the bench.

Five-eighth Ben Roberts on Sunday vowed to set into the breach left by Kimmorley, but Moore said he was comfortable in the knowledge that Holdsworth could do the job.

"With a bloke of (Kimmorley's) ability being out, you suffer in a number of areas, but that's where it's important that everybody in the team - as they've done all year - steps up," Moore said.

"They've all got a role to play and I think the structure in the team is really good this year, everyone knows their job and role and Daniel knows exactly what he needs to do in the team.

"He's very good in the areas Noddy is good, he's got a great kick-chase game and he's a good organiser.

"He played a finals series back in `06 so he's got experience at that level and I've got no doubt he'll do a terrific job."

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