Souths coach admits signs 'aren't good' for superstar Inglis
GREG Inglis is suffering from a shoulder injury similar to which ended the career of former Brisbane Broncos centre and English International Jack Reed.
Offering a deeply concerning insight into the South Sydney champion's uncertain playing future, Rabbitohs coach Wayne Bennett said he couldn't confirm if Inglis' glittering career was over.
"I don't know that,'' Bennett said.
"I've got no reason why he should or shouldn't (play on), that's going to be something for him to decide - that's why he is away for now, just to get himself out of the bubble that we all live in.
"He'll get some reality in his life.
"It's arthritis (in his shoulder) and it flares up and it goes from bad to good to worse, it's unpredictable and at the moment he can't raise it above his head.
"The signs aren't good.
"Surgery won't fix it. It's like Jack Reed at the Broncos when I was there, he had similar problems - surgery won't fix that.”
Inglis was granted official leave from all club related duties and training earlier this week to deal with managing the physical and mental anguish of the most important decision of his career.
The Bunnies power-figure will travel to Queensland today to support his teammates in their round 5 clash with the New Zealand Warriors at Sunshine Coast Stadium this afternoon.
Reed's career was cut-short after 126 NRL games, five Tests for England and one appearance as an NRL All Star in 2012.
The hard-running centre had four operations - two on each shoulder - and suffered from the same arthritis-related pain of which has left Inglis unable to raise his arm above his head.
Reed retired in 2016 when despite intensive rehabilitation it became apparent that his shoulder would never recover sufficiently to enable him play rugby league at the top level again.
After 263-NRL appearances, Inglis is facing an identical battle.
"The shoulder injury is the thing that's stopping him, the pain that he goes through. That's the issue - no other issue,” Bennett said.
"When you've been to the heights that he has for so long, all of a sudden your body is not allowing you to do what you can do, that's the challenge that he obviously has in front of him.
"It's the challenge for all elite athletes in life, how you can maintain that level of excellence and when it starts to dwindle and how you handle that.
Asked if Inglis still had what it takes to continue his career got it?
"That's as much mental as it is physical,” Bennett said.
"I've got no doubt that he's still got it, if he wants to put himself out there and understand that his body is not what it used to be and there are going to be some days where he's in more pain than hes been in the past.
"But they're all decisions for him, I can't make them.
"The club is very supportive of him and I'd be a lot more worried if we weren't doing what we're doing.
"I hope he comes in on Monday with his bag over his shoulder ready to go to training.”
Normal reserved for the backrow, Kyle Turner trained in Inglis' left-centre position yesterday.
The selection of Turner is out of necessity for Bennett with preferred centre options Adam Doueihi (knee) and Braidon Burns (hamstring) on the sidelines with Inglis.
"He's (Turner) confident - I wouldn't put him there if I didn't think he was confident,'' Bennett said.
"He'll do a good job for us, he's done it a couple of times this year already and he's been good when he's been there.”