INJURED CENTRE Jimmy Keinhorst admits he is frustrated to be watching from the sidelines after firmly establishing himself as one of Leeds Rhinos’ first-choice 13.
The German international was ever-present in Rhinos’ opening nine games before suffering a hand injury in last month’s defeat at Warrington Wolves. He has undergone surgery and could be sidelined until July.
“It is a bit frustrating at the moment,” Keinhorst reflected.
“I have got to keep my hand in a cast/splint for another few weeks, then a few weeks after that hopefully I’ll be back.”
Explaining the injury, Keinhorst said: “It’s the top of my finger – the tendon has ripped off.
“I tried to make a tackle, grabbing someone’s shorts or shirt or whatever and it just ruptured. They had to open it up and reattach it.”
It’s not ideal, it has come at not a great time. I was playing where I want to in the centres and to have to miss out now is not great.Leeds Rhinos’ Jimmy Keinhorst
Keinhorst played on until the end of the match and he added: “It was towards the end of the game and it wasn’t painful – it just didn’t function, didn’t move.”
The 26-year-old is still around nine weeks away from being given the all-clear to play again and the injury was a blow to him and the team, particularly with second-rower Carl Ablett – who can fill in at centre – joining the long-term casualty list at the same time.
Keinhorst’s strong form had allowed Joel Moon to move from centre to stand-off, giving Rhinos a new dimension on attack and he admitted: “It’s not ideal, it has come at not a great time.
“I was playing where I want to in the centres and getting some consistency there and feeling more comfortable game by game.
“To have to miss out now is not great, but I have got to stay focused on how I can get back in the best shape possible.”
The nature of the injury means Keinhorst is able to run and do some work in the gym, with adapted equipment, so he can hit the ground running when the finger heals.
“I can do some weights stuff and lower body work,” he said.
“I’m able to run and cycle, it’s just the use of my hand. Hopefully when I come back I’ll be ready to get back in there as best I can, in the best shape I can.”
Keinhorst has already missed four matches, but is targeting a comeback before Betfred Super League splits into Super-8s and Qualifiers.
“I’ve looked at the fixtures,” he said.
“If you take 12 weeks from when I did it, we’ve got three weeks left in the regular season before it splits into the eights.
“Hopefully even with the injury I’ll still have a decent few games towards the end of the season and hopefully we are in a good position heading into the final bit of the competition.”