Vodafone Warriors standoff Chanel Harris-Tavita played through the pain barrier in a display of exceptional courage in Monday night’s Anzac Day encounter with the Melbourne Storm.
It has been revealed today that the 23-year-old had a testicle ruptured in the 34th minute of the match and has since had surgery to repair the damage, keeping him side-lined for three to four weeks.
Harris-Tavita was left in extreme pain after a ‘friendly fire’ incident involving teammate Josh Curran’s knee.
The pair had combined to stop Melbourne fullback Ryan Papenhuyzen scoring in the final minutes of the first half but Harris-Tavita was left in severe discomfort.
He spent almost two minutes being attended to on the Vodafone Warriors’ goal-line before re-joining the defensive line.
In a tale of apt bravery, Harris-Tavita soldiered on for the full 80 minutes finishing with 18 tackles (no misses) despite the Vodafone Warriors being under relentless fire in the second half from the Storm's heavy artillery. Early in the first half he had worked a slick short side play on the right edge to put Dallin Watene-Zelezniak in for the side's first try.
Harris-Tavita is expected to be available again for either the round 10 match against South Sydney on May 14 or against St George Illawarra on May 21.
His injury is a further setback for the Vodafone Warriors ahead of their round eight clash against Canberra at Moreton Daily Stadium on Saturday (3.00pm kick-off local time; 5.00pm NZT).
They had already lost Curran and Watene-Zelezniak to injury plus prop Aaron Pene to suspension.
With Kodi Nikorima also unavailable after a positive Covid test and offseason signing Ash Taylor out indefinitely, Shaun Johnson is the only fit established half left.
However, included on the extended bench this week is Christchurch-born 10-game North Queensland standoff Daejarn Asi who was signed on Tuesday, had his first training session with his new club on Thursday and is now in line for his debut on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Curran is yet to be fully assessed after leaving the field with a knee injury early in the first minute of the second half on Monday night. It’s hoped he’ll be ready to return in four weeks.
Watene-Zelezniak is out this week after being taken from the field with concussion following a collision with Nelson Asofa-Solomona’s knee nine minutes into the second half; he's on track to be back next week.
|Tohu Harris||Knee||Early to mid-season|
|Chanel Harris-Tavita||Groin||Round 10-11|
|Dallin Watene-Zelezniak||Concussion||Round 9|