St Helens forward Matty Lees has been ruled out of the rest of the season and missed out on a place in the Great Britain Performance squad after he perforated his bowel.
The prop suffered the sickening injury during the club’s victory over Leeds Rhinos last month and underwent emergency abdominal surgery.
Although it was a success, Lees will be unable to compete for the rest of the season, with Saints revealing he was set to be included in the Great Britain setup.
“The nature of the injury and its rarity and complexity means it will be a matter of taking it stage by stage in regard to his rehabilitation process,” said the club’s head physio, Nathan Mill.
“Our medical team here at St Helens will judge his progression to correctly determine when that means he will return to play.
“The good news for Matty and everyone involved is he is currently stable at home and improving gradually.”