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Trbojevic chance to make shock NRL return

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 6/06/2017 Steve Zemek

Manly fullback Tom Tom Trbojevic is a chance to make a shock return from injury in Friday's NRL clash with strugglers Newcastle.

Less than four weeks after suffering knee and ankle injuries, the Sea Eagles' ace is pushing his case to be cleared to play.

The 20-year-old was slated to miss six to eight weeks with a medial ligament strain and syndesmosis injury, however is a chance to return a month ahead of schedule.

He has begun running on his injured leg and is scheduled on Tuesday to resume training with teammates.

Coach Trent Barrett could yet rest him for another week, especially with the side having a bye the following weekend.

However, Manly's backline stocks have been stretched with winger Jorge Taufua out for the season with an anterior cruciate ligament injury and Trbojevic's return could prove timely for the sixth-placed Sea Eagles.

"I hope he plays this week - I know he's close," Manly skipper Daly Cherry-Evans said.

"If he does get named for us, that's a huge bonus for us considering the circumstances that have arisen with Jorge being ruled out for the year."

Before his injury against Brisbane in round 10, Trbojevic was considered one of the form fullbacks of the NRL and averaging 165 metres - the sixth most in the league - and 13 linebreaks - the second best in the competition.

He had been pencilled in for a State of Origin debut for NSW on the left wing and an early return would allow him to push his case for the rest of the series, should coach Laurie Daley suffer an injury in his backline.

"He's got an aura about him," Manly centre Dylan Walker said.

"When you see him around the dressing room and that he's playing, you know you've got to step up your game a little bit as well."

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