Hurricanes Christian Welch has called for Kalin Ponga to be ruled out for the rest of the season after star fullback suffered his third HI failure of the season.
In total, the 24-year-old has been sent off five times in 2022 and was sent off after eight minutes in a 19th-round collision.
With Welch having ruptured his Achilles and being out for the rest of the season, the club asked the marquee man what he had to do to get him on the pitch.
Stream every game of the 2022 NRL Telstra Premiership season live and ad-break free when you play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
As it stands, Adam O’Brien’s Knights sit 13th, with finals football very close to reach.
“If the playoffs don’t make it and he’s still signed, you have to look at him as an investment and an asset,” Welch said on Triple M.
“I don’t know what the severity of the head knock is, but what’s the point if you’re not in the playoffs?”
“You can write off two more wins.
But if you have a long-term view of it, which is what I think, maybe shut it down.
More NRL news
‘Multilingualism’: Gagai arrested in ‘thought-related’ incident
‘BEEN A TOUGH SH***Y SEASON’: O’Brien admits Knights’ finals hopes are over
Big wins: The Tedesco-Carey combo fell as the unfortunate riders suffered when they were hit by Ponga.
‘You don’t go away angry.’The Dragons star has been accused of leaking information.
Area of Damage: Dragons sweat on star energy damage; A man knocks his head forward.
While it might be a smart move to keep the Knights looking forward, Ponga has one eye on the World Cup and is against sitting on the sidelines.
After fending off his exit arm from roster executive Matt Lodge, Ponga broke down in tears in the locker room as if to let his teammates down.
The knock was his third shock in the last six weeks, and O’Brien said the star fullback is keen to perform at club level after a strong start.
“He’s upset at the moment. “He wants to come back and play well for the club, especially after his start, but we will go through the process during the week,” O’Brien said in his post-match press conference.
“He had a couple. [of these] But now I’m more concerned about how upset he is. He’s very emotional and seems to be letting everyone down, but at the end of the day, he’s hit his head – and he’s had a couple – so we want to go and see everything.
Get all the NRL news, highlights and analysis straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Register now!!
Ponga will now see concussion specialist Dr Chris Levine at Newcastle’s John Hunter Hospital in the coming days for an assessment.
O’Brien also explained that it was too early to call whether the Maroons No.1 should sit out the rest of 2022.
O’Brien said: “Obviously he’ll go and see Chris Lewin during the week and we’ll go from there.”
But I think it’s too late for me to comment too much when I’m not well educated on this subject, so we’ll leave it to people who know more than I do.