LUCKLESS LEEDS Rhinos forward Brett Delaney has pledged to bounce back from his latest injury setback.
Delaney has been restricted to just 15 appearances this season and is back on the casualty list after suffering a dislocated kneecap in the Qualifiers win at Featherstone Rovers two weeks ago.
That looks like ending what has been a nightmare campaign for the 30-year-old Aussie, but a defiant Delaney insists he is far from down and out.
“The good thing is I don’t need an operation,” Delaney confirmed. “That’s the only positive out of this injury.
“There’s no timescale on it, I’ll just see how it pulls up. All the bleeding’s coming out of it now and I am walking half all right. It’ll take another few weeks to get my strength back and we’ll go from there.”
Delaney, who joined Rhinos in 2010, admitted another lay-off is tough to take.
“This year has been shocking really,” he said. “I can’t string five games together, it has just been one thing after another.
“Maybe if I wasn’t trying so hard it wouldn’t happen, but it is what it is. It’s rugby league, it’s a contact sport and these things happen.
“Unfortunately it was me again, but I am positive about things and I’ll be right. I will be back, I’m just not sure when.”
Delaney admitted he is already starting to think about pre-season and getting back to full fitness for 2017.
“I haven’t had a pre-season for seven years,” he said. “Since I’ve been here I haven’t had a pre-season, because of all the operations I’ve had post-season. It will be good, I can get this year out of the way and start fresh and build a big base from pre-season and go from there.
“If I don’t get back this year I’ll be right for pre-season, I’ll get a big pre-season under my belt and start again. I have still got plenty to offer, I’m not done yet.”
Delaney walked off the field following the injury at Big Fellas Stadium, which he put down to the firm ground.
“My kneecap was up at the top, so I just thought ‘yuck’,” he recalled. “It crunched back in and I walked off. It didn’t really hurt until I got back into the sheds, which was a bit weird. It’s stopping me sleeping a bit at the minute, but I’ll be all right.”
Rob Burrow and Brad Singleton have been ruled out of tomorrow’s game at London Broncos due to injury. Jordan Lilley and Anthony Mullally have been drafted into Rhinos’ initial 19-man squad.
Meanwhile, fans have until 5pm on Monday to vote for the 2016 Yorkshire Evening Post Leeds Rhinos Shooting Star. Nominees are Ashton Golding, Jordan Lilley, Brad Singleton and Josh Walters. To vote, email the name of your chosen player to firstname.lastname@example.org (entering Shooting Star as the email subject).
Please include your name, address and a daytime phone number. Alternatively, send your entry on a postcard or the back of a sealed envelope, to Shooting Star, Sports Desk, Yorkshire Evening Post, No 1 Leeds, 26 Whitehall Road, Leeds, LS12 1BE.