MIDDLEMOUNT Panthers have had a rude awakening to the 2011 season with two serious injuries rubbing salt into the wounds of their 26-12 loss to Emerald Cowboys at the weekend.
One Panthers player found he had a broken leg which required surgery on Monday to be screwed and plated, ruling him out for the remainder of the season.
Another Panther, Will Davidson dislocated his knee and looks to be sidelined for six to eight weeks.
“It was a pretty wild game,” Panthers coach Steve Henderson said.
“We gave them that much possession in the first half it wasn’t funny… just through simple mistakes, we were tackling non-stop.
“But it’s a new-look team, a fair bit different from last year.”
When the Panthers did find some attacking strike, Callum Morrison, Matt Sellings and Davidson proved effective, running over for a try a piece.
One new recruit to shine for Henderson was young second-rower Nathan Bell, who the coach said showed “plenty of promise”.
The Cowboys’ preparation had ramped into top gear after running fresh off a pre-season trial game against Dysart the previous week.
However the bonus game time was of little comfort in the marathon game, which took three hours due to injury stoppages.
“We were good the first half, then were lucky to get any points in the second,” Emerald spokesperson Damon Walsh said.
“The stoppages slowed us down and then we could never get our rhythm back.”
Cowboys’ Braden Kadel did well with two tries in his opening game of the season.
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