AAP Rugby

Warriors blow as prop Afoa injures knee

By AAP Newswire

The Warriors' NRL campaign has been dealt a substantial blow with impact prop Bunty Afoa ruled out for most of the season with a knee injury.

Afoa reportedly suffered an ACL tear at a training session last week, meaning he will be out for several months and potentially won't be sighted in 2020.

The Samoan international made 17 of his 20 appearances off the bench last year, impressing with the explosive bursts that have been a trademark since his Warriors debut in 2016.

Coach Stephen Kearney can ill afford any more injuries to a propping rotation that was already relatively thin.

Leeson Ah Mau and Agnatius Paasi are likely starters again in 2020 while Sam Lisone, Jackson Frei, Lachlan Burr and veteran Adam Blair are also middle forward options.

Kearney has spoken of a desire to field second-rower Isaiah Papali'i in the middle this season.

The Warriors open their campaign away to Newcastle on March 14. Before then they play trial games in New Zealand against Melbourne Storm and Wests Tigers.