Gold Coast’s English import Kallum Watkins has been ruled out of the upcoming Great Britain tour, with the Titans centre succumbing to a rib injury.
Watkins suffered the painful injury in Round 24 against the Newcastle Knights, prematurely ending his season. Because of the extended recovery time involved, the former Leeds Rhinos captain has been ruled out of the four-week tour.
"It's disappointing to lose players, and they are all gutted to be out of contention for the tour," said Kevin Sinfield, the RFL's Rugby Director.
“Injuries happen, they test your strength and depth, and they provide opportunities to others. We'll still have plenty of quality and experience in our squad when it's announced next week."
Watkins joined the Titans mid-year and played six games in Titans colours this season.
Watkins will now shift his focus to the 2020 pre-season which he has maintained would be a priority for him, especially under the guidance of a new head coach in Justin Holbrook.
“That’s the challenge for me, I need to challenge myself in this competition,” Watkins said last month.
“I’ve got aspirations to be successful down here and the early games here have given me a good look at it and now I know what I need to do to be competitive in this competition.
“The training is more intense, which is great, but it needs to be. The family took the option to come to Australia and I would’ve of regretted it if I didn’t come here and give it a go.
“I’m not here to waste the opportunity, I’ll be working extremely hard this pre-season.”
The 25-Test veteran admitted that the move to Australia was a challenge, but both he and the family are settled now.
“It was hard coming in as I was leaving a club that I’d been at for 12 years,” he said of his departure from Leeds.
“We had to come to the other side of the world, which was a challenge.
“For me it was about getting settled in and working hard as much as possible and proving that I can play in the NRL.”