WATCHING ON: Greg Inglis looks on from the bench during the Charity Shield NRL pre-season match.
WATCHING ON: Greg Inglis looks on from the bench during the Charity Shield NRL pre-season match. DAN HIMBRECHTS

Trio among chorus backing Inglis to overcome injury battle

RUGBY LEAGUE: Michael Maguire, Andrew Fifita and Brad Fittler have joined a growing rugby league chorus backing star Greg Inglis to overcome his latest injury battle.

Inglis has been given the week off as he continues to rehabilitate a nagging shoulder issue, as well as shrugging with a stomach virus.

It is the third straight week Inglis has failed to appear for South Sydney, prompting major fears that he may have played his final game in the NRL.

The speculation has since been denied by coach Wayne Bennett, while a resting Inglis has yet to personally allay concerns about his future.

After Rabbitohs players rallied around their skipper this week, former coach Michael Maguire became the latest to voice his confidence over Inglis' return.

"I've had a lot to do with Greg. He's a champion and I'm sure in the right time, when he comes back in, he'll produce what he's capable of doing,” Maguire said.

"He was unbelievable to work with and at the end of the day, he'll get himself back to where he wants to get to. Any team is aware of what Greg's capable of doing.”

The shoulder problem continues an injury-plagued start to the season hindered by surgeries on his upper arm and neck.

There are also concerns his health issues have begun to take their toll mentally on the Queensland State of Origin captain.

Inglis, 32, has previously opened up on confronting mental demons stemming from a knee reconstruction that wiped out almost his entire 2017 campaign.

"We just need to give him his time and space,” Fifita said.

"Having gone through wellbeing and mental health, I feel like he has asked for time for a reason and we should acknowledge that and give him space.

"I'm sure if he jumps over the hurdle and sees the light at the end of the tunnel, he'll come back firing.

"South Sydney are a team bound for finals and are bound to be somewhere in the top eight. To have him coming back late in the season is very scary.”

Fittler was reluctant to weigh in on Inglis' issues, but remembered how he opted to hang up the boots in 2001 when his body began to betray him.

"I was having a bit of a bludger year in 2001. I was a bit injured, and made some decisions on giving the best for the (Sydney) Roosters,” he said.

Asked for his advice for veteran players also battling injury, Fittler said: "I think it all comes down to whether you enjoy going to training, or is it a task.”



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