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Injured Dugan facing Origin fitness fight

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    A shattered Josh Dugan is in danger of missing the opening State of Origin clash for NSW after damaging the AC joint in his left shoulder in Canberra’s 14-8 NRL loss to the Sydney Roosters on Sunday.

    Dugan left Allianz Stadium with his arm in a sling and did not speak to media, but he made his feelings about both the injury and the defeat clear in a Twitter posting.

    “Devastated. But the boys are staying positive and to you haters, keep hating gives us motivation,” wrote Dugan.

    The 21-year-old will undergo scans on Monday to ascertain the severity of the injury but Raiders coach David Furner said the initial prognosis from medical staff was that his star would be ruled out for “up to four to six weeks, maybe even longer”.

    Should he be out for six weeks, Dugan would miss the NSW City v Country match in Mudgee on April 22, but return for round nine against Manly, two weeks ahead of the State of Origin opener in Melbourne.

    If the injury proves to be more serious, he would be forced to miss a third successive Origin after performing superbly in last year’s opener, only to miss the next two matches with a calf injury.

    Veteran Roosters fullback Anthony Minichiello took over as Dugan’s replacement in the 2011 series, after Manly star Brett Stewart deemed himself not ready as he made his way back from a career-threatening knee injury.

    With Jarryd Hayne battling a knee issue and Kurt Gidley also out with a dislocated shoulder, the door could now open for Stewart to return to the Blues side for the first time since 2008.

    Raiders prop David Shillington, who was forced to play 71 minutes for his side with injuries to fellow forwards Trevor Thurling (knee) and Shaun Fensom (bicep)in the first half, revealed Dugan cut a desolate figure in the sheds as he contemplated another long spell on the sidelines.

    “He’s a tough player to replace Doogs, he has some freakish ability and he’s a bit down in there,” Shillington told AAP.

    “Hopefully for him, and for us it is not too bad and he’s back out on the paddock soon.”

    In Sunday’s other games, South Sydney mentor Michael Maguire tasted victory for the first time as an NRL head coach as his side beat Penrith 40-24 at Centrebet Stadium.

    And Canterbury joined Melbourne – who beat Gold Coast on Saturday – and Manly – who face Cronulla on Monday – as the only teams with 100 per cent records in 2012 with a fine 32-18 win over the Warriors in Auckland.

    Des Hasler’s Canterbury relinquished a 16-0 lead to trail 18-16 early in the second half before two late tries sealed the two points.

    Maguire rang the changes following his side’s defeat by Melbourne, with Greg Inglis starting at fullback and it worked a treat with the Queensland superstar scoring a try.

    Giant second rower David Taylor scored two tries to end a run of two successive defeats for the Rabbitohs.

    Parramatta coach Stephen Kearney is under mounting pressure after his side became the first Eels outfit to lose their first three games since 1991 when they slumped 42-6 against North Queensland in Townsville on Saturday.

    Kearney has tasted defeat in 20 of his 27 games at the helm of the club and his team will be the only side without a win should Cronulla beat Manly at Toyota Stadium on Monday night.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (12)

    • March 19th 2012 @ 9:53am
      Charles said | March 19th 2012 @ 9:53am | ! Report

      Dugan should never have been considered for Origin.
      He is not up to it and proved that last year
      He does have potential but firstly he needs to get over his injuries which seems to be occurring all the time
      Brett Stewart is the front runner providing they can find a spot for Hayne who must be in the side, probably as centre

    • March 19th 2012 @ 9:53am
      Charles said | March 19th 2012 @ 9:53am | ! Report

    • March 19th 2012 @ 1:40pm
      Shaamus said | March 19th 2012 @ 1:40pm | ! Report

      Dugan’s name shouldn’t even come up for Origin. The kid hasn’t been able to string more then a hand few of games together. While Minichiello had the position last year, it would be wise for NSW to go with Stewart. He is over his injuries that affected him last year. As for Hayne. The guy has only played 16mins of footy this year. Trying to find him a spot in the team would mean someone else missing out and I don’t think us NSW supporters would wanna see either the Morris twins, Uate, Lawrence, Jennings or maybe even King miss out. Considering all these players have the front running to cover 2-5 for NSW.

      Cross Dugan and Hayne’s name off the list for now.

    • March 20th 2012 @ 10:25am
      Charles said | March 20th 2012 @ 10:25am | ! Report

      Shaamus, well said I agree with your analyses.
      However if Hayne is anywhere fit enough we must have him in the side, he is the X-Factor, if let loose! I
      If Hayne was included my backline would most likely be something like the following;
      Bret Stewart
      Brett Morris
      Josh Morris
      Jarrod Hayne
      Akuila Uate
      Jamie Soward
      Ben Hornby

      • April 7th 2012 @ 2:48pm
        evo87g said | April 7th 2012 @ 2:48pm | ! Report

        Hornby are u serious and soward is a girl its embarrassing watching him play for the blues.

    • March 20th 2012 @ 7:27pm
      Shaamus said | March 20th 2012 @ 7:27pm | ! Report

      I agree with you Charles. Hayne does have that X-factor abut him. But I wouldn’t suggest placing him in a position where he barely plays. Wouldn’t be right on the other plays and the likes of Inglis and Hodges will catch him off guard during the game.

      My 1-7 would be the following:
      Brett Stewart
      Brett Morris
      Josh Morris
      Chris Lawrence
      Akuila Uate
      Todd Carney
      Mitchell Pearce

      I know people will turn there head with me saying Todd Carney. But fact is that him and Pearce combine so well that it puts the team in a good position to start with. Everyone has said it all along, Pearce will be the halfback for many years to come. I do however think Peter Wallace should be given a go again. His involvement has improved since Locky’s retirement. But that is my judgement and if i was selecting the team, its the way I would go.

    • March 21st 2012 @ 11:09am
      Charles said | March 21st 2012 @ 11:09am | ! Report

      Why should Mitchell Pearce be given another go, he is not up to it, most can see that!
      Todd Carney is a good player I have no problem with him
      However, why would you get rid of Jamies Soward who has the best kicking game in the business
      He will keep getting better leave him there but give him support, which is to my mind Ben Hornby
      Jarrod Mullen , Peter Wallace are good but not outstanding that is why Ben Hornby or even Todd Carney as 1/2 may be the best option
      Still some time to go to for the team to be chosen but Shaamus it would be a sin to leave out Jarrod Hayne
      He can fit in anywhere and do well, he is so talented

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