Former Warriors skipper's NRL career all but over after hamstring injury

The NRL career of veteran Ryan Hoffman appears to be over after the Melbourne Storm backrower suffered a hamstring injury during their loss to Cronulla.

Storm coach Craig Bellamy said that Hoffman, who had already announced his retirement at the end of the season, was in tears in the AAMI Park change-room after suffering the injury late in the game.

"We are really concerned - he's in tears in the dressing room which is not easy to see, especially a player in the twilight of his career," Bellamy said.

"He's been a wonderful player for our club and I'm not quite sure he will play again.

"They are thinking it's a really major hamstring injury.

"I know he will do everything he can to get back again this year and not retire on this note."

Bellamy said Hoffman, 34, would have scans through the week but left the ground on crutches.

The coach said that one of Hoffman's legs was lifted in a tackle with just a few minutes remaining in the match.

Hoffman started his NRL career with Melbourne in 2003 and returned to the club twice after stints with Wigan and the Warriors.

He has played 325 NRL games; 265 with the Storm.

Ryan Hoffman in action for the Storm. Source: Photosport


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'I haven't thought about the end' - Simon Mannering staying composed as NRL career winds down

Warriors legend Simon Mannering says he's not thinking about his final few games playing for the club, having announced he'll retire at the end of the current season.

Quickly approaching the 300 game mark for the club, Mannering put in a trademark effort for the Warriors in Friday's 20-4 win over the Knights, putting the side one step closer to their first finals appearance since 2011.

However, despite walking away from the club where he's spent his whole professional career, Mannering says that he's not focusing on when the curtain comes down on his time with the Warriors.

"In all honesty, I haven't really thought about the end," he told Stuff.

"I thought that probably would be the case, but honestly, I haven't thought about the end or how many I have left.

"I'm just enjoying playing alongside these guys and I'm stoked for them all that we're playing some good footy after some pretty lean years."

Mannering also insists that the side keeping their focus towards the end of the regular season, still not guaranteed a spot in the NRL's top eight, should other results go against them.

"Next week it's the Bulldogs for us over in Sydney and it's nice to have consecutive wins, but we'll carry on building and in these next few round robin games we've got to focus on ourselves, it doesn't matter who we're playing against."

He debuted for the Warriors in 2005 and will hang up his boots at the end of the 2018 season. Source: 1 NEWS


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NZ Rugby League shut down chance of Tonga-Kangaroos Test in Auckland

New Zealand Rugby League officials have blocked any plans of a Tonga-Kangaroos Test in Auckland, seemingly worried that the clash would overshadow the Kiwis.

With Mate Ma'a Tonga's rise at last year's World Cup, calls for the Pacific powerhouse to face the reigning world champions have only grown louder, with either Auckland or New York mooted as a possible venue.

However, with the Kiwis to host Australia on October 13 at Mt Smart Stadium, NZRL boss Greg Peters said that any possible clash between Tonga and the Kangaroos in Auckland was unfeasible.

"We have been talking with the Australian Rugby League Commission and they're looking at a number of options for that game," he told the Sydney Morning Herald.

"One of them was in Auckland, but we have a test match against Australia the weekend before, and we want to give prominence to that in our market.

"It's the first time we've played Australia in New Zealand for four years. Other than the World Cup, we've had precious little content in our own market.

"We want to rebuild the Kiwis jersey and get back on side with our fans, and this is a great opportunity for us to do that against Australia.

"It's a smaller market – we're a small sports market, let alone rugby league market in New Zealand."

An announcement over the logistics of any Kangaroos-Tonga clash is expected in the next 48 hours.

Jason Taumalolo leads the Tongan haka.
England v Tonga, Semi-Final, Rugby League World Cup 2017. RLWC2017. Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland New Zealand. Saturday 25 November 2017 © Copyright Photo: Andrew Cornaga / www.Photosport.nz
Jason Taumalolo has committed to Mate Ma'a Tonga. Source: Photosport


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