Cronulla skipper Paul Gallen will be sidelined for up to six weeks after receiving confirmation he suffered ankle syndesmosis in Monday night's NRL loss to the Gold Coast.
And star front-rower Andrew Fifita is set to miss at least two games after being charged with a shoulder charge to the head of Titans winger David Mead, the double blow likely to leave the Sharks without their two best forwards for next Monday's clash with Canterbury.
Gallen was helped off the field late in the first half of his side's 18-12 loss to the Titans it was feared he could be out of action for even longer after he heard a crack when his foot twisted in a two-man tackle.
But the good news for the 31-year-old is that he doesn't require surgery and will be back in action in time for the mid-year test against New Zealand on May 2 and also for NSW's State Of Origin series opener on May 28.
Fifita, who looks certain to sign for Canterbury at the end of this season after the Bulldogs tabled an A$850,000 (NZ$94k) a season contract to the NSW and test front-rower, will miss two matches if he accepts the early guilty plea and three weeks if he opts to fight the charge at the NRL judiciary and loses.
The former Wests Tigers prop refused to discuss his future on Monday, but is to make an announcement later this week.
The Sharks are already without halfback Jeff Robson, test back-rower Luke Lewis and winger Beau Ryan.
However, coach Peter Sharp hopes to have key playmaker Todd Carney and experienced forward Chris Heighington back against the Bulldogs.
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