Titans star suffers tragic injury at training
THE Gold Coast Titans have been dealt a cruel blow with incumbent captain Ryan James suffering a potentially season-ending knee injury.
James suffered a reoccurrence of the anterior cruciate ligament injury, in his right knee, that ended his 2019 NRL season after only six rounds.
The 28-year-old forward had only recently returned to full contact training after completing his rehabilitation.
He is awaiting further scans and a specialist's opinion, but ACL injuries generally require surgery and at least nine months' recovery.
"Further scans and testing will be required to get a more accurate picture around Ryan's process from here as far as treatment, recovery and rehabilitation," Titans performance boss Mal Meninga said.
"Everyone at the Titans shared Ryan's pain today. He is obviously a hugely popular part of this club, and earned even more respect with the positive way he applied himself to his recovery from the original injury last year without ever once getting down or feeling sorry for himself.
"We all desperately wanted Ryan to be back on the field and back to his best this season - a goal he had set himself, and deserved to achieve.
"This news is obviously devastating to Ryan and his family, but also to his friends and colleagues here at the Titans."
James collided with a teammate while training at Cbus Super Stadium yesterday morning, with scans later revealing the extent of the injury.
It is the third ACL rupture James has endured since debuting in the NRL in 2010.
He has overcome a raft of injuries in a 144-game NRL career and has been the Gold Coast's captain for the past three years.
On Thursday, James told NRL.com he was back to full fitness and was ready to play for the Indigenous All Stars on February 22.
"It is a good sign coming back from a knee injury knowing that the pace and strength is still there," James said.
"I did a couple of agility tests today. Having the confidence to be able to do it is one thing and not even thinking about it is another thing, and that is the stage I am at.
"I have gone past even thinking about the knee and I am just training. I feel back to normal and the knee is one hundred per cent."
The loss of James is blow to the Titans who are looking to bounce back in 2020 after collecting last year's wooden spoon.
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