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Broncos forward Kurt Capewell has added his name to the list of sports stars who were injured in unusual circumstances after being ruled out of Thursday night’s Rabbitohs clash when he suffered a neck injury in drying with a towel.
The representative back rower was in a lot of pain earlier this week and was not selected in the squad for the showdown at the Accor Stadium.
Brisbane manager Kevin Walters did his best to piece together the innocuous incident when he faced the media on Wednesday when he simply explained: “He injured himself while drying himself off with a towel.”
Capewell’s accident ranks among the strangest in NRL history for bizarre reasons for missing playing time, such as:
- Canterbury striker Greg Eastwood who missed time in 2011 when he injured his ankle stepping on his son’s Lightning McQueen toy;
- Tom Trbojevic said he suffered a hamstring injury early last year when he slipped in the bathroom, although footage later emerged of the star full-back sprinting over Manly Corso with a fan the night before, which he always denied.
- Raiders star Jack Wighton has disappeared four months after tearing the ligament in his foot bone when he fell from a trampoline;
- Legend has it that David Liddiard pulled a muscle in his back in the early 1990s while playing Manly while brushing his teeth;
- Eel hooker Matt Keating spent a night in hospital and six weeks on the sidelines in 2011 when he was bitten by his bulldog Bronx while struggling in the backyard;
- Panthers halfback Peter Wallace sliced his hands in a fishing accident in 2016, which kept him out of preseason tryouts;
- Kiwi international David Kidwell tripped over his daughter when the toddler got in his way during a barbecue and damaged ligaments in his knee, putting him out of action for the rest of the regular season 2007;
- Cowboys veteran Tim Brasher needed knee reconstruction in 2001 after falling while trying to clean a ceiling fan;
- Maroons striker Dave Taylor needed his head bandaged at Camp Origin in 2012 after falling out of bed, but to be fair he’s a big human so not all mattresses could accommodate him;
- Blues prop Robbie Kearns missed an Origin game in 1999 after breaking his collarbone falling off a horse during a bonding session organized by coach Wayne Pearce to keep the team away from their traditional camp drinking session;
- New Zealand duo Stephen Kearney and Jason Donnelly were hospitalized in 1993 when the first floor balcony of their team hotel collapsed and they fell onto a brick pavement. Kearney suffered serious head injuries and Donnelly suffered a broken pelvis;
- Technically it’s an off-pitch injury – Joey Leilua missed the start of the 2019 Preliminary Final against Melbourne when nearby fireworks went off as he ran towards AAMI Park and ash lodged beneath his eyelid.
Walters said Capewell should only miss one game and be back for next week’s Magic Round clash with Manly after moving freely on Wednesday.
His absence, along with stalwart of form Payne Haas (shoulder) will be tough to deal with as the sides, both 4-4 this season, battle to stay in the top eight.
Brisbane have dropped just four points in aggregate in the second half of their last two games and held a restless south to just four points in their first-round win.
“Kurt is a big part of our defense, but I was particularly impressed with our right side defense, with Kotoni (Staggs) and Selwyn (Cobbo) and that’s where the Souths like to run,” Walters said.
“So we have to be strong there and make sure Jordan Riki and Reyno do a good job (on the left side without Capewell).”
Reynolds had COVID-19 and missed Brisbane’s season-opening upset loss to his former club but was instrumental in the Broncos’ rebound in form over the past fortnight.
The Rabbitohs are short-term favorites to face this season’s ledger in Sydney, but the half-back could once again inspire his new team.
“His influence on our team has been great and he has some knowledge of the Souths,” Walters said.
“It’s his first game against his former club, we want to make sure it’s a good performance from all our lads to support him.
“We have to play well for Adam; it’s great for him to go back… it’s a special week for him.
“I’m not too concerned about the Souths…they’ve been a good team for a long time but we’re up, on the move.”
South Sydney will deploy the same starting line-up that beat Manly last week.
TC Robati will start alongside returning Pat Carrigan (knee) as Brisbane chase a third straight win for the first time since 2019.