Newcastle Rugby: Head knocks force Delore to take time out

TIME OUT: Southern Beaches fly-half Michael Delore hopes to return next season. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers
TIME OUT: Southern Beaches fly-half Michael Delore hopes to return next season. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

SOUTHERN Beaches gamebreaker Michael Delore will assist coach Va Talaileva for the final two games but the former NSW Country fly-half hopes to return to the field next season.

Delore hasn’t played since suffering concussion in Beaches’ 46-19 loss to Maitland at Marcellin Park a month ago.

It was the 31-year-old’s second head knock this season and comes after the 2016 Anderson Medal-winner sat out the major semi-final and preliminary final last season under similar circumstances.

“I have had a bit of a history with head knocks and have decided to take a break for a while,” Delore said. “I’m enjoying helping out with the coaching and will continue do that for the rest of the season.”

Wanderers lock Cal Groth retired earlier his season due to a series of concussions.

“I am not going to give it away at this stage,” Delore said. “I get married early next year and hopefully I will be back after that.”

Delore has been assessed at the Sports Concussion Clinic at Newcastle University twice this season.

“Doctor Andrew Gardner is an expert in the field,” Delore said. “You can’t muck around with it. My scores in the cognitive tests were fine. Then I copped another knock and thought it was best to take a rest.”

Delore continues a horror run of injuries for Beaches, who are in sixth spot and out of contention for the finals.

“Trying to get consistency has been hard,” Delore said. “The injuries haven’t been one or two weeks either, they have six and seven weeks.”