Bulldogs expect Foran back for NRL return

Scott Bailey
Kieran Foran is poised to return to Canterbury's NRL line-up for their round three game on May 31

Canterbury expect to have gun five-eighth Kieran Foran back in their side when they restart their NRL season against Manly.

Foran was expected to miss the majority of the season when he injured his shoulder last year while playing for New Zealand.

But the Bulldogs star is back in full contact training, working closely with the Bulldogs' left edge.

He is not yet considered a certainty for the May 31 clash against the Sea Eagles but Bulldogs teammates now believe he will be out there.

"I expect him to be playing, he's worked really hard and is training really well," forward Dylan Napa said.

"I haven't known him too long but he says this is the best he's felt mentally and physically as well.

"They are big boxes to tick.

"He has worked really hard to get through this injury and get back on the field."

Canterbury won four of the last five games he played in 2019 and he would add some much-needed experience in the halves next to Lachlan Lewis or Brandon Wakeham.

Bulldogs players are not surprised, however, over how quickly Foran has recovered, even accounting for his horror run with injuries.

They watched him beat a three-month ankle injury in just six weeks last year and know how determined he is to get his career back on track.

"For most people that (return last year) wouldn't be possible," winger Nick Meaney said.

"He must deal with pain a lot differently. For him to come back so quickly is crazy.

"We're all excited to be around him."

Foran's return is a rare piece of good news for the Bulldogs on the roster front.

They lost winger Marcelo Montoya for up to three months this week with a hamstring tear, just as he looked set to return from a knee injury.

Joe Stimson will be missing from their pack for the rest of the season due to a shoulder reconstruction.

That comes after Kiwi international Corey Harawira-Naera had his contract torn up before he even played a game in the forwards this year for the schoolgirl sex scandal.

But Napa said the forwards left standing were ready to embrace the pressure up front.

"If you think you're going to go through a season of the NRL without pressure on you then you are daydreaming," Napa said.