Crichton opts for finger amputation

22 December 2017 01:35:32 EST

South Sydney Rabbitohs back-rower Angus Crichton has had surgery to amputate a finger in a bid to be fit for the start of the 2018 NRL season.

Crichton, who told South Sydney last weekend he would be leaving at the end of next year to join Sydney Roosters, has been troubled by the middle finger of his left hand for several years.

He ruptured a tendon in the finger during his stint in the club's under-20s system and Rabbitohs general manager Shane Richardson confirmed the 21-year-old had had it partially amputated.

"He needed to do something about it," said Richardson. "He has had four operations and reconstructions on it and made the choice himself, in discussion with the medical team."

Following the surgery Crichton will be able to return to the training paddock in January, whereas if he'd had it reconstructed again it would have meant up to 10 weeks on the sidelines.

"It just became so frustrating for him that every off-season he had to have a reconstruction, so he opted to partially amputate his finger. He had this option 12 months ago and he chose not to do it," said Richardson.

Crichton, who has played 30 NRL games since being handed his bow in Round 19 last year, has had his finger fused six times in the space of three years and was left unable to bend it.

He had a breakout season this year, playing 22 times and scoring seven tries including a hat-trick against Gold Coast.

South Sydney are 13/4 to win the 2018 Grand Final, while the Rabbitohs are 1/250 to finish in the top four.

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