DRAGONS coach Paul McGregor has thrust Kurt Mann into the halfback role, as he also faces a double injury blow.
Mann was named in the No.7 jersey to take on the Gold Coast on Friday night, with Josh McCrone pushed to the bench.
The move comes as in-form prop Paul Vaughan faces a month on the sidelines and teammate Tyson Frizell is in doubt to St George Illawarra’s clash with the Titans.
In his 100th NRL game, Vaughan came from the field in the opening minutes of the dramatic 32-28 victory over the Knights at Kogarah. Athletic performance manager Nathan Pickworth confirmed Vaughan is out for 3-4 weeks, meaning he may not play again until they take on Newcastle again on July 29.
Pickworth remained hopeful Frizell would line-up for the Dragons on Friday night, despite suffering a medial ligament sprain in his ankle.
“He has pulled up reasonably well,” Pickworth said. “The MRI has revealed a medial ligament sprain in his ankle. He’s a bit swollen and a bit puffy and we’re going to see how he progresses through the week.”
While the Dragons have a bye next week, Frizell will go back into NSW State of Origin camp on Sunday, trying to win the decider against Queensland in Brisbane on July 12.
However, Euan Aitken has been named in the Dragons line-up recovering from a hamstring strain which has left him sidelined since May.