Hull KR's Michael Dobson to miss FC derby at KC Stadium?
HULL KR have suffered a major blow ahead of this weekend's clash with Castleford Tigers as captain Michael Dobson has been ruled out with a hamstring injury.
And the Aussie scrum-half appears to be facing an uphill battle to recover in time to feature over the busy Easter schedule.
The Mail understands the KR captain is a major doubt for the Good Friday clash with Hull FC at the KC Stadium.
It comes after he hobbled from the field late on in Sunday's 34-12 loss at the Bradford Bulls.
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Initial fears were that Dobson could have torn his hamstring, an injury which might have forced a lengthy period on the sidelines.
However, a scan earlier this week brought good news of sorts, showing Dobson to have only suffered a strain.
Although that certainly rules him out of facing the Tigers on Sunday, he does have an outside chance of featuring over Easter.
The injury is similar to that suffered by full-back Greg Eden earlier this season, with the estimated return time between two and four weeks.
That would make a best case scenario a return to lead the Robins against the Black and Whites in the first cross-city clash of the season on March 29.
However, given Eden was missing for three weeks, the home clash with Wigan on Easter Monday, or perhaps when Rovers entertain St Helens the following Sunday, may be more realistic targets.
The news will come as a bitter blow to Rovers coach Craig Sandercock as he looks for his side to bounce back from Sunday's loss.
He has so far only been able to field his first-choice half-back duo of Dobson and former Penrith star Travis Burns three times this season.
Two of those resulted in wins for his side against Warrington and London, and although Dobson and Burns suffered their first loss together at Bradford, it is thought Burns was one of the players Sandercock made reference to afterwards, when indicating he had risked some unfit players at Odsal.
Rovers are now understood to be monitoring Burns closely ahead of the weekend, as he looks to overcome a niggling back injury to take on the Tigers.
Burns also had to leave the field early at Odsal on Sunday and has been struggling at training this week, although KR hope he will be fit to play.
The situation may see Sandercock draft Craig Hall back into the half-backs to face Ian Millward's men at MS3 Craven Park on Sunday.
Hall had been in contention to return to action at Bradford last weekend, but was given an extra seven days to recover from his recent ankle injury.