Lambton Jaffas captain Jobe Wheelhouse says he will be back for the Northern NSW National Premier League finals despite scans revealing a chipped bone in his right ankle.
Wheelhouse, 32, was injured in the Jaffas’ 5-0 FFA Cup loss to Edgeworth on Saturday and had scans on Tuesday. After a second set of scans, Wheelhouse was told he had a small bone chip on the base of his fibula as well as torn ligaments.
The former Jets captain faces four to six weeks in a CAM boot, all but ending his regular season. The Jaffas lead the competition by a point from Valentine with eight matches to go.
Wheelhouse overcame torn ankle ligament to lead the Jaffas to grand final victory in 2014 and said on Wednesday he would be back in time for the finals.
Jaffas coach James Pascoe said the loss of Wheelhouse would further test their depth after the loss of Nathan Morris (knee) for the same time.
“If we’ve been one thing this year, we’ve been resilient, and that will come to the fore,” Pascoe said.
“I don’t think we’ve really set the world on fire with our football, but I’ve watched the group come back from goals down to win games, and ones they probably had no right to, just through desire and sticking together.
“We’ll give a good account of ourselves.”
He said Pat Brown (dislocated elbow) was still sidelined, while Ryan Griffiths (groin), Joel Griffiths (calf) and Ridge Mapu (hamstring) were in some doubt for Saturday’s home match against Weston.
“We’ve got a deep enough squad to put out an 11 this week that would most clubs would like to be able to put out, but we’re certainly bashed up,” he said.
Pascoe said the club had not considered an injury replacement and he was unsure where they would turn to find one at this time of the year.