Castleford head physiotherapist Matt Crowther has confirmed that half-back Luke Gale will not play again this season.

Gale has been sidelined for the full campaign after suffering a serious Achilles injury, though he had hinted at an outside chance of making an early return.

On Gale’s injury, Crowther said: “His injury was a nine months to a year sort of injury.

“People forget that he’d not just ruptured his Achilles tendon. but he had a patellofemoral joint issue as well.

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“It’s a double whammy for Luke but he’s doing really well with his rehab at the minute, it’s seven and a half months down the line and he’s sprinting nearly at 90%.

“He’s not a million miles off but he needs a couple of months of full training and doing the normal thing, which he’s not done for at least 14 months, even after getting him back from his previous injury it was a push to get him fit for the semi-final last year, so he’ll definitely not be back for this year.”

Crowther confirmed the news as part of a wider update on the club’s injury situation.

He said: “I thought 2016 was a bad year for injuries but this season has smashed it out of the water.

“Just the unfortunate collision injuries and things that are just way out of your own power have been unbelievable.

“Not just short-term but long-term stuff and obviously having senior and influential players that we’ve had out for periods of time has been unbelievable.”

Crowther confirmed that Liam Watts will be ready to return in Friday’s match against St Helens and Greg Eden should return within the next week

He added that Junior Moors “should be walking about in the next month”, but requires further rehab, Chris Clarkson has an outside chance of featuring in the play-offs, while Alex Foster will definitely not play again this season.