New South Wales have been dealt a major blow ahead of State of Origin game one, after captain Paul Gallen confirmed reports that he will miss that match.
Gallen has been sidelined with a gluteal/hip problem, and whilst the Sharks confirmed that problem is improving, it will not be right for the first annual clash between NSW and Queensland.
“The Sharks and NSW Origin medical staff got together and discussed my situation and where I was at with the rehab and it’s just too big a risk to play with the injury as it is at the moment,” Gallen said.
“If I came back too soon and re-tore it, which would be a real possibility, it would be season-ending.”
Gallen also said the game, which takes place on May 27, could potentially be hampered for NSW if he is involved when not fully fit.
“The other reason we made the decision we have, I wouldn’t be able to train with the NSW team next week, which would disrupt their preparations. The speculation as to whether or not I could play wouldn’t help the NSW team either,” he said.
“At this stage I’m also unlikely to be fit for the Sharks next game against the Dragons, it’s only three days after Origin 1. More realistically I’m another 3-4 weeks on the sidelines.”