Hopoate cleared for NRL round one

Canterbury recruit Will Hopoate will be fit to slot in at fullback in the club’s NRL season opener against Manly after being cleared of a serious knee injury on Monday.

The NSW State of Origin star suffered the injury in the Bulldogs’ 24-20 trial loss to Penrith on Saturday.

There were fears Dogs coach Des Hasler would be forced to opt for a third string No.1 for the March 4 match at Brookvale Oval, with first choice custodian Brett Morris set to miss the first month of the new season due to a knee complaint.

Bulldogs physio James Rahme said on Monday that would not be the case.

However former Manly and Parramatta utility back Hopoate will miss Canterbury’s final trial match against Melbourne at Belmore Sportsground on Saturday.

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