Peacock will join fellow front rower Luke Burgess on the sidelines after he suffered a double fracture to his jaw bone in Friday’s win at Castleford. Peacock, who has twice won the Challenge Cup at his previous club, was due to appear in his first Carnegie Challenge Cup Final for Leeds and to appear for the first time at Wembley in a fortnight when the Champions take on Warrington. However, he will now travel with the squad but will be unable to play any part in the game.
Commenting on the news the 32-year-old said: “Personally it is obviously very disappointing news, it just goes to show how cruel a game Rugby League can be and I now have to do everything possible to get myself back fit for the start of next year. I won’t be having the operation until after Wembley so I will be able travel with the team to be part of their preparation and help them out in any way I can. I am sure the lads will rise to the challenge. We have a great squad with great players and I know they can do themselves proud at Wembley.
“I am stunned to be out of action for six to eight months and it has been a bit bewildering if I am honest. The injury did not feel any worse than previous knocks but the scans have revealed the worst possible news,” added Peacock.
Leeds Rhinos Head Coach Brian McClennan said his thoughts and those of Peacock’s team mates were with their talismanic forward. He commented: “We are devastated for JP. He has worked so hard this year to get us in the current position we are in with a chance of fourth, in a good position for the play offs and through to the Carnegie Challenge Cup Final. We have now lost two of our props and that gives us an extra challenge to lift up and go forward.
“JP will be around the camp and doing everything he can to help the team. What it comes down to now is every player fortunate enough to take to the pitch for Leeds, to lifts us up. We always say before every final that the 17 who go out on the field are not just doing it for themselves but that they represent their team mates and our great club. Everyone puts the Rhinos first, that is what we do, and I know that they will make both JP and Luke Burgess proud of their efforts,” added McClennnan.