ANXIOUS: Tyrone RobertsKNIGHTS halfback Tyrone Roberts is still waiting for an analysis of scans on the facial injury he suffered in the team’s 18-all draw with Penrith at Port Macquarie last Saturday night.
Nanjing Night Net

Roberts suffered a suspected fractured right-eye socket from a head clash and was replaced in the 64th minute, soon after he had converted Matt Hilder’s try for an 18-12 lead.

The 20-year-old Junior Kangaroos representative and Ballina Seagulls product had scans on Sunday but is due to see a specialist today for a full diagnosis and prognosis.

He is unlikely to be available for Newcastle’s NRL season-opener against the Dragons at Hunter Stadium on March 1, and if he requires surgery he could be sidelined for up to six weeks.

Roberts was the only significant injury concern for the Knights from the game against Penrith, and he will join fellow playmaker Ryan Stig (groin and knee) and utility back Peter Mata’utia (knee) in the casualty ward.

Coach Wayne Bennett rotated 27 players against the Panthers but said he would not use that many in the final pre-season hit-out against Cronulla at Muswellbrook on Saturday night.

NSW and Australian winger Aku Uate, who had clean-up surgery on his knee after helping the Kangaroos win the Four Nations tournament last November, is a likely starter against the Sharks after being rested from the Penrith game.

Panthers centre Michael Jennings was charged by the NRL match review committee yesterday with a grade-one dangerous throw for a lifting tackle in the 48th minute last Saturday, but will not miss a game if he pleads guilty.

Dragons duo Dan Hunt and Atelea Vea are expected to miss the NRL kick-off against Newcastle after they were injured in St George Illawarra’s 18-12 loss to North Queensland in a pre-season trial in Perth last Saturday.