Tautau Moga has suffered a second ACL injury just one game into his return from his first one.
The 19-year-old again suffered the injury at training without any contact made, according to the Sydney Morning Herald:
An MRI scan on Saturday confirmed Moga had ruptured an anterior cruciate ligament for the second time in eight months.
”He was training with the 20s, who were training together with first grade,” said Roosters chief operating officer of football Brian Canavan. ”He stepped off his right knee. Obviously there’s a predisposed weakness there.”
With a six month recovery the minimum the youngster is out for the season but should be right to start next season — although again this should be expected through the 20s or with Newtown.
26 Rounds detailed the seriousness of the injury and its recovery in a piece just before his return against the Bulldogs last week in the Holden Cup; this trek back will only be harder now with his confidence in his knee bound to be absolutely shot.
You have to feel for this kid — and one only hopes this isn’t another Anthony Cherrington-type of career ahead for the superb young talent.
The Roosters have been hit hard by injury in the past two weeks. Kane Evans has been ruled out for the season, Martin Kennedy is out for between two and three months, Samisoni Langi remains out with a shoulder complaint and James Maloney picked up a couple of minor cheek fractures in State of Origin and is out against the Manly Sea Eagles on Monday. Further depleting their squad was the release of Lama Tasi to the Broncos on Friday, despite the injury to Evans.
It has been long expected that Moga would be the player to take the vacant spot once Anthony Minichiello retires, which many believed would be at the end of this season. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck would move to the back with Moga to move onto The Sheck’s wing.
But it looks like Mini was keen to stick around for another season anyway.
Again, according to the Sydney Morning Herald (the only place besides 26 Rounds to get decent stuff about the Roosters):
“I know a lot of people think it’s my last year here but I feel I have a lot more to give and I’m excited about hopefully going around again with the Roosters next year,” the 33-year-old said before Monday night’s match against Manly at Allianz Stadium.
“There’s no doubt [Tuivasa-Sheck] is a fullback and if I do stay on next year I’d definitely do what’s best for the team in that department. He’s ready, he’s a class player, he’s the future of the club … a future superstar.”
Mini has his critics but he might be needed next year now, with Moga expecting a long, confidence-building recovery from his second ACL injury in eight months. Mini would shift out to The Sheck’s wing — should the Roosters re-sign their captain of course.
He started his career on The Sheck’s wing and could finish it there. 26 Rounds posted an article earlier this season detailing why it was imperative that RTS be moved to the fullback spot immediately — and this was before the Sheck’s purple patch of form in recent weeks.
But if he doesn’t get moved this year, it’s good to know that even Mini recognises the importance of the shift and Roosters fans can expect it to happen next year.