Wigan Warriors head coach Shaun Wane has confirmed that John Bateman will be out for three month following shoulder surgery.
The England international has played only once for the Warriors this season in their World Club Challenge triumph against Cronulla Sharks.
After the Cherry and Whites 38-16 win against Warrington, Wane said: “We’ve lost John Bateman for three months.
“I wrote down my strongest team last year and never got anywhere near it. I did the same again this year, it’s a pointless exercise.”
Despite their mounting injury list, Wigan still sit top of the Betfred Super League table having won all four of their games this season.
Bateman, who now looks likely to miss England’s mid-season match against Samoa, wrote on twitter: “Thanks everyone for the get well soon messages and support. Operation done and my recovery is under way.”