Panthers' Luai suffers 'significant' shoulder injury

Dan Himbrechts/AAP PHOTOS

Penrith are set to be without Jarome Luai for the start of the NRL finals with the defending champions revealing their star playmaker has suffered "significant damage" to his shoulder.

Luai has avoided surgery and will instead rehabilitate the injury to try to play a role in the Panthers' play-off campaign as they attempt to secure a third consecutive premiership.

"The representative playmaker has avoided immediate surgery however there is significant damage to the shoulder," the club said in a statement on Friday.

"Luai will immediately begin rehabilitation on the injured shoulder in a bid to return during the NRL finals series."

The star five-eighth dislocated his left shoulder when Parramatta defenders Bryce Cartwright and Joey Lussick twisted Luai awkwardly as they attempted to hold him up in goal during the first half of Thursday's clash at Penrith Stadium.

Luai remained on the ground after the tackle was completed, cradling his left arm.

The 26-year-old left the field, with his shoulder put back into place in the sheds.

His injury is a major blow to the ladder-leading Panthers, with the finals less than two weeks away.

Luai has been Penrith's five-eighth throughout four dominant seasons, playing in their 2021 and 2022 premiership teams, and is a cornerstone of their attack on the left edge.

The Panthers rely on his creativity with the football to complement Nathan Cleary, the side's tactician in the halves.