STGEORGE Illawarra will be withoutJosh Dugan for 4-6 weeks with the star fullback to undergo surgery on a broken jaw sustained in the Blues thrilling 18-14 win in Origin III on Wednesday night.
Nanjing Night Net

RULED OUT: Dragons fullback Josh Dugan will miss four to six weeks after scans revealed a fractured jaw suffered in Origin III requires surgery. Picture: Getty Images

Dugan was helped from the field midway throughthe second half on Wednesday after a hardcollision with Maroons centre Greg Inglis and did not return.

Coach Laurie Daley said the injury“could be serious” post-match andDugan confirmed the worst for Dragons fans via Twitter on Thursday, tweeting:“Scans showed a broken jaw, surgery to put a plate in tomorrow! Will be doing everything I can to get back ASAP for the dragons”.

Inglis will miss three weeks for the shot after pleading guilty to a grade two charge for leading with his shoulder.

It’s proveda double-blow on Thursdaywith Benji Marshall also ruled out of Friday’s clash with the Titanswith the re-occurrence of the hamstring injury that’s kept him out ofseven of 17 matches this season.

“Unfortunately Benji has pulled up with some hamstring tightness and given his history we think it best he be rested,” Dragons head of medical and performance Tony Ayoub said.

“Benji had trained earlier on in the week but club medical staff thought it best he not play so that he can focus on continuing his rehabjj.

“It is no secret that this would have been his 250th first-grade game but the important thing now is that when he does return and reach this milestone he is playing at a hundred per cent.”

With the Dragons top-eight chances on a knife-edge, the loss of his two major attacking aces is a major headache for coach Paul McGregor.

Tim Lafai, who was set to play for the Illawarra Cutters this week, appears the man most likely to earn a recall for Friday’s clash with Gold Coastwith either Kurt Mann or Jason Nightingale to shift to fullback.

Experienced head Josh McCroneis the man most likely man to replace Marshall while young-gun Drew Hutchison is also an option.

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