Star full-back Billy Slater will miss State of Origin III and the remainder of the 2015 NRL season as he prepares to undergo shoulder surgery.
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The Queensland and Melbourne Storm man played in Origin II whilst carrying the injury and will undergo surgery next week to repair a labral tear of his glenohumeral joint in his left shoulder.
Slater said he was extremely disappointed with the outcome, but admitted the surgery was necessary.
“After each game I play, the battle to get up for the next week is becoming harder and the shoulder takes longer to settle down not allowing me to play to my full potential,” Slater said in a Storm statement.
“Each week I’ve been focused on getting up for the next game and was able to do that for Origin on Wednesday night at the MCG, however the best decision is to undergo surgery now.
“I’m extremely disappointed not to be available to play for Queensland in Game III and especially for the rest of the season with Melbourne Storm.”
Slater initially suffered the injury against the New Zealand Warriors in round five.
Storm football director Frank Ponissi said the club took the conservative approach to Slater’s injury.
“After Billy sustained the injury initially in Round 5 we knew he would require surgery at some stage,” Ponissi said.
“At the time we made the decision with Billy to take the conservative approach and rehab and strengthen the joint to get to the end of the season, but knowing potentially at some stage we wouldn’t be able to continue with this approach.
“While we would love to see Billy out on the field for the rest of the season, it was becoming harder for him to recover each week between limiting his preparation for games.”