North Queensland fans haven’t stopped speculating about the identity of their next coach in the week and a half since the Cowboys and premiership-winning coach Paul Green made the shock decision to part company.
North Queensland NRL star Valentine Holmes is set for up to 10 weeks on the sidelines after having surgery on his injured ankle.
Holmes had an arthroscopy on his left ankle on Monday and after the probe revealed the ankle syndesmosis was unstable he had the ligament surgically repaired.
The 24-year-old will spend between eight to 10 weeks recovering before he can return to league action for the Cowboys.
The news is a blow for Paul Green’s struggling team, which has slipped to 12th on the ladder after last weekend’s heavy loss to the Sydney Roosters in Townsville.
Holmes lasted just 41 minutes in the 42-16 defeat before aggravating the ankle he’d first injured the Warriors in round five.
Despite knowing his prize recruit wasn’t at full fitness, Green defended playing Holmes following the loss to the Roosters.
“He got jammed up in a tackle as well which didn’t help given he had a sore ankle to start with,” Green said.
“He got passed last week to play and pulled up good.”
Holmes’ absence is the last thing the Cowboys need before Sunday’s game against in-form Penrith with captain Michael Morgan (shoulder) also sidelined.