Hull FC forward ruled out for the rest of the 2024 Super League season with horror injury as Tony Smith reveals timeframe

HULL FC head coach Tony Smith has confirmed that young forward Nick Staveley has been ruled out for the rest of the 2024 Super League season having ruptured his ACL.

Staveley missed last Friday’s Hull Derby fixture due to a knee issue sustained in training. However, further scans have shown a more serious injury than first feared.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of the Black and Whites’ fixture against Huddersfield Giants, Smith said: “We got the full report this morning. We were first under the impression that he had nipped the cartilage in his meniscus, and we thought it would take two to six weeks, but it ended up that he’s damaged his ACL.

“It will be a nine-month recovery from the time of operation. It’s a lot more severe than first expected.

“It was from a rather innocuous occurrence in the team run last week. He was holding a tackle shield for another player to practice his tackle technique. He stumbled out of that in an awkward way. He didn’t think it was that bad at the time, but obviously it is.

“It’s a real blow for Nick. I feel for the young man. He was doing a good job for us, and he was starting to find his feet and get some regular game time in first grade. He’s taken the news very, very well and very positively. He won’t feel sorry for himself. He’s just got to get on with rehabilitating the best he can and get back as early as he can.

“Nick has a support network here with all sorts of staff. We’re a pretty close-knit group anyway, and we’ll take care of him. We’ll make sure of that.”

Smith also confirmed that Danny Houghton will be unavailable for selection for Saturday’s fixture against the Giants with a rib injury, while Jack Ashworth will also spend a spell on the sidelines due to a thumb injury which requires surgery.

“Danny is sore. I’m unsure what the time-frame is but he won’t be available this week. He may need to numb it before he plays again, and after Huddersfield, we have a week off. That may give him enough time to make the game after that. We’ll play it by ear.

“Jack has cracked a bone in his thumb. He was going in for an appointment today. He may have an operation as we speak with the forecast of a six-week recovery.”

Smith confirmed that both Liam Tindall and Joe Cator are both back in contention for selection this weekend.

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