GOALKICKING outside back Kirk Dixon is out of action for the rest of the season, Castleford Tigers boss Ian Millward has confirmed.
Dixon has been playing on with a complex injury as the Tigers have been so short of outside backs, but after having to come off during the second half of Sunday’s Super League game against Salford his head coach believes it is time he underwent surgery in a bid to get the problem sorted.
Millward praised Dixon for his efforts in recent weeks despite an injury that has affected his shoulder, spine and neck and will now seem him sidelined for six months.
He said: “I think that will be Kirk Dixon’s last game of the year.
“He went into games in the last few weeks with a shoulder injury, but Josh Griffin was injured so we needed him to play one more week.
“I was really impressed with Josh Griffin’s performance against Bradford and he should be back next week. If he was fit he would have played and Dicko’s last game would have been last week.
“He’s been very brave carrying the injury for a while. Keep in mind he’s a winger playing in the centres.
“But we patched him up, told him how great a player he was and he was very excited to play. Now we can tell him he can go and have an operation.
“It’s quite a major operation. It’s a bit to do with his spine and also the vertebrae on his neck.
“He has been losing power and each week it’s been diminishing until this week when he was tested he was down to something like 10 or 15 per cent of his power.
“He knew this was his last week regardless of what happened. It was a brave performance, but he’ll have surgery now and he will be out for a minimum of six months.”
Dixon, 27, who has been with Castleford since 2007, had a shoulder reconstruction last winter after his 2011 season ended early with injury in the Tigers’ Challenge Cup semi-final against Leeds last August.
He also spent six months on the sidelines in 2009 after a tear in his right calf failed to heal properly, resulting in a blood clot which spread to his lungs.