Widnes Vikings forward Stephen Bannister is set to miss the start of the 2009 season with a broken leg.
The 21-year-old, who signed from Salford last week, picked up the injury in a training ground accident.
Vikings sporting director Terry O'Connor said: "Stephen has made a positive impact since joining us.
"His team-mates are all upset by his injury, especially as it happened in training. It just goes to show what a tough sport this is."
Bannister is due to see a specialist to discover the full extent of the injury.
O'Connor believes the former St Helens and Harlequins second-rower has the correct attitude to deal with his injury set-back.
"Stephen is a positive player and is already looking forward to getting back to training."