Parramatta forward Ben Smith is set to be sidelined for several months, after undergoing surgery on his pectoral injury.
Smith suffered the injury during the Eels’ 26-10 loss to Penrith in last weekend’s trial match and is expected to be unavailable for an extended period.
Parramatta coach Stephen Kearney said Smith could return before the end of the season.
“Ben’s obviously very disappointed but there’s positive news in the fact he’s a good chance to return to the field later this season,” Kearney said.
“He’s an important part of our squad and losing him is a blow for us, but fortunately we have a few players who can cover his position.”