Penrith superstar Jarome Luai has not given up on returning this season despite suffering a serious shoulder injury last night.
Luai left the field in the first half after dislocating the shoulder while trying to score a try in the 32-18 loss.
After initial fears his season was over, Luai has been given a glimmer of hope by scans this morning.
“The representative playmaker has avoided immediate surgery however there is significant damage to the shoulder,” the Panthers said in a statement.
“Luai will immediately begin rehabilitation on the injured shoulder in a bid to return during the NRL Finals Series.”
Luai will miss Penrith’s opening Finals game but is targeting a return in the Preliminary Final should the Panthers make it.
The 26-year-old told The Sydney Morning Herald this afternoon: “I feel good. It’s not too sore. People are asking me how I slept and if I got any sleep at all. I think I got eight hours, so I think that’s a good sign.”
When asked if he expected to return this season, he said: “Yes sir. Definitely.”
The Panthers’ chances of claiming the Minor Premiership took a significant blow last night with Brisbane now in the box seat to take first place on the ladder.
Regardless, the Panthers have locked in a BlueBet Stadium Final in the first weekend of the playoffs.
Troy Dodds is the Weekender’s Managing Editor and Breaking News Reporter. He has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working with some of Australia’s leading media organisations. In 2023, he was named Editor of the Year at the Mumbrella Publish Awards.