Anxious wait for injured Mullen

by admin on July 13th, 2018

filed under 南京夜网

KNIGHTS playmaker Jarrod Mullen faces an stressful wait after a recurrence of a hamstring injury in Sunday’s 36-4 loss to competition leaders Cronulla at Shark Park.
Nanjing Night Net

The 29-year-old required surgery in June after tearing the tendon from the bone and missed nine games before returning in Newcastle’s 20-16 loss to Melbourne nine days ago.

He played strongly against the Storm in his comeback game and was heavily involved against the Sharks, only to experience a “twinge” just before the half-time break after making a tackle on Sharks centre Jack Bird.

He was replaced at the interval and spent the second half watching from the sidelines, while hooker Danny Levi filled in as a stop-gap pivot.

Mullen is expected to have scans on Monday.

“We’re not sure, to be honest,’’ Knights coach Brown said when asked about Mullen’s condition.

“We’re not sure if it’s just scar tissue from his hamstring [surgery], or another problem…we couldn’t afford to take the risk, obviously.’’

The Knights trailed 10-0 when Mullen was injured and Brown admitted his departure –which compounded the absence of Sione Mata’utia, Jake Mamo, Daniel Saifiti and Robbie Rochow –left his team vulnerable.

“We lost those four blokes last week, and then losing Mullo at half-time …it sounds like you’re making excuses, but they are young kids who are still learning how to play their preferred positions, so it put us fairly out of synch,’’ Brown said.

The Knights were hanging in at half-time but conceded six tries in the second stanza, including two within 10 minutes of the resumption.

Fullback Ben Barba scored twice and had a hand in several other tries, while centre Jack Bird and winger Valentine Holmes also baggeddoubles.

Newcastle’s only try came from winger Nathan Ross, his seventh of the season.

Sharks coach Shane Flanagan said he had “mixed feelings” about his team’s 15thsuccessive win.

“We had 19 errors and turned the ball over, and against the good sides you can’t do that,’’ he said.

“But in saying that, if Newcastle weren’tpresenting us with so many opportunities, we wouldn’t have pushed the pass …I’m not overly concerned about the 19 errors, conceding possession, because when we really need to knuckle down, against areally good side, one of those top teams, I think we will.’’

Brown said the query he had about the Sharks was if their pack was big enough to handle play-off football.

CRUNCH TIME: Jarrod Mullen tackles Wade Graham in the first half on Sunday.

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