Ryan Papenhuyzen injured again, hobbled in ‘concerning’ changeroom scenes in Storm win vs Titans

Ryan Papenhuyzen is set for another stint on the sidelines after he was injured again in the Melbourne Storm’s victory over the Gold Coast Titans on Saturday night.

The Storm celebrated Cameron Munster’s 200th game with a 22-20 win over the Titans, but it was soured by an injury to a fan favourite.

Papenhuyzen has been in sensational form and looms as the X-factor the Storm need if they are going to challenge the Panthers and Broncos for the premiership.

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The 25-year-old scored the Storm’s third try at Gold Coast’s Cbus Super Stadium in the 26th minute, but disaster struck soon after.

Just before halftime, Papenhuyzen chased down a kick and tackled Titans fullback AJ Brimson in the in-goal to force a goal line drop out.

But he got caught in the tackle underneath Brimson and Munster, and emerged from the pack gingerly.

Papenhuyzen was immediately in visible pain, grabbing his right ankle. He got to his feet but couldn’t put any weight on his right leg and played no further part in the game.

Cooper Cronk said on Fox League: “Great effort to chase the ball and as soon as he gets up he grabs it and can’t put pressure no it.

“He can hardly put any weight at all on that right leg. He limps the whole time. He tried to run it off but went straight up the tunnel.

“It must be a sharp pain. I’m not trying to guess here but it could be a little bit of a crack because you don’t react that sharply unless it’s something significant.”

Mal Meninga added: “Let’s hope not. He’s had wretched luck for the last couple of years. We just want to see Ryan Papenhuyzen play many games.

“We’re big fans of his. Let’s keep our fingers crossed it’s nothing serious.”

Papenhuyzen was later seen limping around the Storm’s changerooms and wrapping his leg in compression bandages in what Fox League’s Yvonne Sampson described as “concerning scenes”.

Cronk added: “A lot of concern from the Melbourne Storm coaching staff. It’s the same right ankle he broke in that finals series against the Brisbane Broncos.

“Watch him go to the showers — he can’t put any pressure on that whatsoever. It might be related to that broken ankle he did last year.”

Papenhuyzen played in Melbourne’s 2020 premiership win and was awarded the Clive Churchill Medal in the Grand Final.

But the popular fullback has struggled to stay on the park consistently since then due to concussion in 2021, hamstring injuries and a fractured knee cap in 2022, before breaking his ankle in the qualifying final loss to the Broncos last year after missing most of the 2023 season.

Papenhuyzen will undergo scans for an injury Melbourne Storm medical staff suspect is a high ankle sprain.

After scoring four tries in the first half, the Storm only added a penalty goal through Nick Meaney and held on for a gritty win to consolidate their place in the NRL’s top four.

Read related topics:Melbourne

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