Leeds Rhinos head coach Rohan Smith has confirmed that they will welcome Harry Newman back this weekend, but Justin Sangare’s season is over, and Richie Myler’s probably is too.
Talented centre Newman, 23, has suffered a torrid time with injuries, suffering a double leg break in 2020 and accumulating just 21 appearances over the two seasons which followed.
The latest setback came in Round 13 this year against St Helens as he limped off with a fresh hamstring blow, but 12 weeks later he’s now back in contention for this weekend’s meeting with Warrington Wolves, and boss Smith is delighted to have him back amongst the squad.
Leeds Rhinos all set for Harry Newman return
Also able to play on the wing, Huddersfield-born Rhinos ace Newman is an England Knights international.
Despite his leg break in 2020, he was named as Super League’s Young Player of the Year, and with his best years still ahead of him, he’s now back in the fold oncemore.
Head coach Smith said: “Harry Newman will be back, and so will [David] Fusitu’a whose just finishing off his return to play after a concussion.
“Harry will be the most notable one though. It’s a boost for everyone [to have him back], he’s an infectious character with good energy and great spirit.
“He plays hard, he’s very competitive, wants to win, and the boys love playing with him. It’s a good thing for us to have him back.
“It was always a 12-week timeframe, but more than that estimated return date, he’s gone through the process and trained really hard the last couple of weeks especially. He’s come through with flying colours.
“Harry’s missed a lot of footy over the last couple of years. You want your best players available, and Harry’s one of them.
“Morgan [Gannon]’s also close, he’s still got a little bit to tick off before we make a decision on whether he’s in the 21 or not.”
Rhinos chief delivers bad news on star man Myler
The news on Newman – and fellow youngster Gannon too – was the best it got from a Rhinos persuasion.
They’ll go into Sunday’s game against the Wolves without Ireland international Richie Myler or prop Justin Sangare. Boss Smith confirmed that it’s unlikely either will appear again before 2024.
Myler had already missed their defeat to Leigh Leopards a fortnight ago with a suspected stress fracture in his foot which has now been confirmed. Meanwhile, French international Sangare was injured in that game against the Leopards, tearing a muscle in his foot.
Smith added: “[Richie] has had a follow-up x-ray in the last few days, and things are healing well, which is good. That’s the priority at this stage to focus on the healing and then we’ll re-check in a month or so and see if there’s any chance of a return at the back end, but he’s most likely done for the year.
“It’ll be the season for Justin with that injury. He won’t recover in time to get enough training under his belt to play again.
“He’s had a pretty solid start to life in England, it’s been a pretty big move for a young bloke to come over here from the South of France and take that leap. He’s learnt a lot, contributed well, and got a good base for more to come in the years to follow.”
In a final squad update, the Rhinos chief told the media that Zane Tetevano wasn’t ready to return to action just yet. The former Sydney Roosters man suffered a stroke earlier in the year.
“He’s still got some medical things to get through before he can contemplate full training or anything like that,” said Smith.
“We’ll work through things with him and update whenever we can.”