Champion out for up to six weeks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Champion out for up to six weeks

Melissa Woods 09/05/2011 06:41:52 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne Storm centre Beau Champion has avoided surgery but also lost any chance of NSW State of Origin selection with his shoulder injury keeping him on the sidelines for up to six weeks.

Champion dislocated his shoulder while playing for City in their narrow loss to Country Origin in Albury last Friday night.

It was feared he would need to go under the knife but further scans on Monday revealed the injury was manageable through rehabilitation.

"It's four to six weeks but he won't require surgery," a club spokesperson said.

Champion was an outside chance of pulling on the sky blue NSW jersey for their first clash with Queensland at Suncorp Stadium on May 25, with coach Ricky Stuart set to name his line-up on Sunday night, a day earlier than usual.

The 24-year-old impressed for City, standing up Country and former Blues and Test flyer Josh Morris as he scored, while he has been consistently strong for the Storm.

City coach and NSW legend Brad Fittler described Champion after the match as a winner.

The injury could open the door for giant rookie winger Elijah Niko to make his first grade debut, should Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy look to shuffle his backline for their meeting with Canberra on Saturday afternoon at AAMI Park.

Champion only joined the Storm in January when he was traded from Souths as they secured Test centre Greg Inglis.

However he has failed to settle off the field in the Victorian capital and has been granted a release by Melbourne for next season.

Champion is likely to reveal he has signed a long-term deal with the Gold Coast on Wednesday.

He was also the target of two Sydney-based clubs - believed to be Cronulla and Canterbury.

The Titans announced on Monday they were no longer pursuing St George Illawarra fullback Darius Boyd, leaving plenty in their salary cap to sign Champion.

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