Will Hopoate of the Bulldogs is assisted from the field.
Will Hopoate of the Bulldogs is assisted from the field. PAUL MILLER

Hopoate set to miss a month with facial fracture

CANTERBURY'S early season headaches have been compounded by news Will Hopoate has suffered a facial fracture that could sideline him for up to a month.

Hopoate was taken to hospital after Thursday night's loss to the Roosters following an ugly head clash with Chooks prop Zane Tetevano, ending the night early for both players.

The Bulldogs fullback suffered a severe concussion in the incident, with scans confirming he has a fractured eye socket as well.

The club has released a statement advising further scans are needed to determine if the injury requires surgery.

It's understood Hopoate may be out until round seven's Good Friday blockbuster against Souths if that's the case, a blow the Dogs can ill-afford after losing their first two games of the season.

Hopoate's injury is compounded by the loss of young centre Kerrod Holland, who suffered an AC joint shoulder injury early in the 28-24 defeat to the Tricolours.

He will be sent for more scans as well, with Des Hasler lamenting Holland will "be out for a little while" in his post-match press conference.

Brett Morris looms as the obvious replacement in the No.1 jumper, with youngsters Marcelo Montoya and Reimis Smith in line for first-grade call-ups as the Bulldogs draw on limited backline reserves.

The Roosters were also in the wars throughout a bruising affair, losing prop Kane Evans minutes before kick-off with a calf complaint, while Blake Ferguson is also awaiting scans on a rib injury that forced him out of the contest.