Catalans Dragons full-back Brent Webb looks set to miss the remainder of the season after it was confirmed that he requires a back operation.
The former New Zealand and Leeds ace has been sidelined since suffering the injury in last month's 26-14 defeat at Warrington, when he was sent off and incurred a one-match suspension.
The 32-year-old, who missed the final three months of his last season with the Rhinos due to a knee problem, will go under the knife on Friday and is expected to be out for between four and six months.
It is the second major blow for the Catalans, who are still without scrum-half Scott Dureau after he underwent surgery in December to remove a brain tumour.
"It's obviously really bad news, especially after Scott Dureau's surgery," said Catalan coach Laurent Frayssinous. "They are two key players in the squad and two of the best players at their position in Super League.
"The team had to face a couple of pieces of bad news since November and has always found the strength to overcome that.
"The Brent Webb long-term absence is an opportunity for other players who deserved it to play in Super League and earn their place on the team sheet."