Penrith’s Will Smith has accepted an SOS from Indigenous coach Laurie Daley after North Queensland hooker Ray Thompson was ruled out of Saturday night’s All Stars clash in Brisbane.
Thompson will undergo surgery on Friday night after suffering a fractured ankle at the final training session for the showcase event at Suncorp Stadium.
He will not only miss the All Stars clash but also the Cowboys’ World Club Challenge clash against English champions Leeds in the UK next weekend.
“It was just a little accident at training, he was in a lot of pain,” Daley said.
Smith will arrive in the Indigenous camp on Friday night.
Bulldogs’ Craig Garvey replaces Thompson as starting hooker.
It is another blow for the All Stars match which has already been hit hard by player unavailability.
Five players pulled out of the Indigenous side during the week while nine of the original 20-strong World All Stars squad withdrew.
Thompson’s injury is also a blow to the Cowboys depth ahead of their NRL title defence.
The majority of the North Queensland WCC squad flew out for the UK on Friday.