Rabbitohs youngster Dean Hawkins has had an NRL debut to remember, and not just because of his side’s 35-6 win.
Hawkins came off the bench in Souths’ victory over Brisbane, but a post-match injury, which required 15 stitches, was likely the most memorable part of his night.
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A horde of Hawkins’ mates from his junior club, the Matraville Tigers, travelled to Stadium Australia to watch the game.
After the win, the young half jumped into the crowd to celebrate, but the festivities proved short-lived.
Hawkins (left) won’t be forgetting Thursday night’s game any time soon.Source:News Corp Australia
Hawkins suffering a laceration to his leg in his fence hop and promptly returned to the sheds to be sewn up.
“I didn’t even feel it when it happened, probably because of the adrenaline,” Hawkins said.
“It wasn’t until I walked off I realised I’d sliced (my leg) open.”
Brien Seeney — aka The NRL Physio — reports the Rabbitohs youngster avoided any significant muscle or tendon damage and will be available for selection in one to two weeks.
WARNING: Graphic content
Rabbitohs debutant Dean Hawkins suffered a lower leg laceration when jumping the fence at the end of the game. Required 15 stitches, but thankfully seems to have avoided significant muscle/tendon damage. Superficial wounds usually heal well, return in 1-2 weeks pic.twitter.com/930KGIenqm
It remains to be seen when Hawkins will be called up for his second game, though, as there is currently a surplus of quality halves on the books at Redfern.
Hawkins’ Rabbitohs dominated the Broncos throughout Thursday night’s game, scoring three unanswered second-half tries to claim victory.
The game also featured Australian rugby league’s first two-point field goal since 1970, courtesy of halfback Adam Reynolds.
At the end of last year, the NRL announced a host of rule changes for the 2021 season, including that field goals scored from outside the 40m line would be worth two points rather than one.
NRL experts were sceptical of the new change, debating whether playmakers would actually take advantage of the extra point on offer.
“I don’t anticipate an influx of setting up for field goals to get one extra point,” said former representative half Jamie Soward in December.
Players at the Sharks and Panthers have attempted 40m field goals this season, but so far, Reynolds’ is the only one to sail over the black dot for two points.
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