Shenton out of Four Nations
England centre heading home after being ruled out of remaining matches
Last Updated: 28/10/10 1:15pm
Shenton: heading home
England's Michael Shenton has been ruled out of the Four Nations after suffering ankle ligament damage in the first match against New Zealand.
The centre sustained the injury during Saturday's 24-10 loss to the world champions in Wellington and will now fly home to complete his recovery.
Shenton will first watch England's clash with Australia on Sunday but is naturally disappointed to miss out.
"It's completely ruptured so the series is over for me," said the 24-year-old, who moves from Castleford to join St Helens in 2011.
"I enjoyed that game and was looking forward to coming up against the Aussies and getting some payback for last year's defeat.
"It's pretty upsetting from a personal point of view but it gives an opportunity to someone else in the team. That's why you take a 24-man squad.
"I'm definitely going to support the boys on Sunday. I think the guys are really ready for it. Everybody has gelled really well on tour."
Despite picking up the injury during the first half at the Westpac Stadium, Shenton stayed on and was responsible for the break that led to England's second try against the Kiwis.
"I wasn't thinking about the injury," he said. "I had a million other things on my mind.
"There was a fair bit of pain but it could have been worse. I ripped off the full ankle strap, which probably cushioned the blow, and the fact that I played on was a good sign."
There is good news for Shenton, however, in that he will not need to undergo surgery and should be ready to take part in pre-season training with his new club next month.
"I just need to rest it," he added. "It's only a few weeks' injury. Unfortunately the tournament is only short, otherwise I might have been able to get back in time.
"I'll get back and see the physio and the medical staff to get it checked out. I'll also get to meet up with (new St Helens coach) Royce Simmons, I've not spoken to him yet."
Shenton joins Adrian Morley in departing the Four Nations early, the England captain having flown home last week for surgery on a ruptured bicep he sustained in the warm-up match against New Zealand Maori.
Given that the tournament had yet to start, coach Steve McNamara was able to replace Morley with Warrington team-mate Garreth Carvell. However, he must now operate with a 23-man squad.
McNamara has the option of replacing Shenton with either Leroy Cudjoe or Tony Clubb, the two specialist centres yet to feature on tour.