Wing lasts eight minutes, out six weeks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wing lasts eight minutes, out six weeks

By Todd Balym 14/03/2008 11:17:41 PM Comments (0)

Gutted South Sydney halfback Craig Wing has been ruled out for at least six weeks after controversially suffering a dislocated shoulder in their NRL season opening 34-20 loss to former club the Sydney Roosters at ANZ Stadium.

After eight seasons with the Roosters, Souths prodigal son lasted just eight minutes in his comeback game for the Rabbitohs when he was hit from behind by Roosters hooker Riley Brown in a three-man tackle.

Souths coach Jason Taylor called it a deliberate cheap shot and Wing revealed the tactic had been coached at the Roosters since 2002.

But the halfback said he'd never thought it was aimed at injuring a player and doubted the act was premeditated.

"We started it at the Roosters. It's an interesting tactic and it worked I guess but I think that's more to try and drive a player back than put a cheap shot on him," said Wing.

"If you can hold someone up and get a third man in and drive them back, it's a good tackle.

"I'm sure that they probably wanted to put a little extra into each tackle I was in ... If I was in the same position I probably would have done the same thing.

"It's just unlucky on my behalf."

Wing's return to Redfern had generated plenty of publicity and ill-feeling back at the Roosters, adding to the 100 years of hatred between the fierce rivals.

After such a hyped build-up, Wing said he was "embarrassed" and "disappointed" his homecoming had ended so quickly.

He had made just five tackles before the incident, which also involved Braith Anasta and Anthony Tupou.

"Gutted would be an understatement," said Wing.

"I just really wanted to start off on the right foot but these things happen and you just have to deal with it.

"Straight away I knew it was dislocated because I heard a pop and couldn't get my hand back to my side.

"And then half a second after that I knew what the implications were and I had thrown my whole off-season out the window and I'd left my team pretty much one man down for most of the game."

Wing required muscle relaxers to have the shoulder relocated in the dressing rooms, Souths director of athletic performance Errol Alcott predicting Wing's best case scenario was a return in six weeks if scans did not reveal he would require surgery.

Either way, Souths are concerned at the long term damage as shoulder dislocations have a tendency to repeat, like the case of Wests Tigers star Benji Marshall.

"We're concerned about the amount of damage to the shoulder joint internally and whether there is any bone damage where the point of impact was in terms of ribs and shoulder blades," said Alcott.

"Minimal could be six to eight weeks. If he needs surgery it just goes on from there.

"One of the big concerns is we don't want him going through re-dislocation as that just causes trouble and more trouble and ends up a bigger operation."

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