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Sea Eagles lose star man AGAIN as hamstring issue rules Tom out of pre-season



Manly superstar Tom Trbojevic is a major doubt for the start of the NRL season after his hamstring issue was revealed to be a Grade 2 tear, ruling the former Dally M Medallist out for 6-8 weeks.

That will make him a major doubt for Round 1 of the 2023 NRL: though there is time for the hamstring to heal before the big kick-off, the time taken out of pre-season may leave the Sea Eagles’ star undercooked come the visit of the Bulldogs to Brookvale on March 4th.

There is also the substantial risk of reoccurrence, especially if Trbojevic is less than 100% ready for the rigours of week to week NRL. Manly has the bye in Round 2 before a blockbuster derby with Parramatta in Round 3, which might be a more realistic target.

The representative fullback was completing a series of drills when he limped off after slowing down at the end of a run on Wednesday. According to a NewsCorp report, Trobojevic was seen with his head in his hands after the incident.

He has been sent for scans and the Sea Eagles have their fingers crossed that it is not a serious injury.

“Tommy Turbo” only played a combined 19 games in 2019 and ’20 due to hamstring tears in each leg and missed the first month of the 2021 season after he said he slipped at home despite footage showing him racing a member of the public on the Manly Corso late at night the previous weekend.

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Trbojevic recovered to win the Dally M that year as Manly went within 80 minutes of a Grand Final berth.

Trbojevic has had a history of hamstring issues and underwent surgery earlier this year after reaggravating the problem in a round-four win over Canberra.

The Sea Eagles No.1 only returned for three more games before a shoulder injury ended his season against Parramatta in May.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MAY 20: Tom Trbojevic of the Sea Eagles leaves the field with an injury during the round 11 NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the Manly Sea Eagles at CommBank Stadium, on May 20, 2022, in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

He underwent surgery to repair the damage and not only missed the rest of the NRL season but was unavailable for Australia’s World Cup campaign.

Manly have undergone plenty of turmoil off the field recently with veteran coach Des Hasler sacked with a year remaining on his contract, replaced by former Souths and Broncos mentor Anthony Seibold, whose own start to the off-season was delayed due to his previous role as an assistant coach to the England rugby team.

The difference in Manly’s fortunes without the 2021 Dally M medallist is stark. Since 2019, they have won 68 per cent of games when he is fit and just 34 per cent when he is sidelined.

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