Injured North Queensland Cowboys star Tom Dearden is desperate to play Finals footy.
In fact, he's so desperate to get back in action that he's willing to go to extreme lengths to do so.
Yes, that's right, the young five-eighth would even chop of his testicle if it meant he could run out on the field.
Let us explain.
The 21-year-old sustained a ruptured testicle in Round 23, courtesy of an accidental wayward knee from New Zealand Warriors forward Jack Murchie.
At the time, Dearden miraculously played on, although scans the following day confirmed the worst.
Dearden had, in fact, ruptured his testicle and underwent surgery almost immediately.
Prior to going under the knife, his return date hadn't been pencilled in, meaning the young star was even willing to sacrifice said testicle in order to play in the opening week of the Finals.
“He’s fine. A really uncomfortable injury I’d imagine. He’s a really tough kid. He was chomping at the bit to play,” Payten said on Triple M.
“Truth be told, when he met with the surgeon, the first thing he said was, ‘If I’m going to miss a month, I want you to chop it off’.
“That’s how much playing finals meant to him. I nearly fell off my chair when I got told that.”
Dearden has been instrumental in guiding the Cowboys to a third-place finish this season.
His new partnership with halfback Chad Townsend has quickly become one of the deadliest combos in the NRL.
He has certainly come a long way from his days with the Brisbane Broncos.
“He was a shell of a person, I’ve got to say,” Payten told Fox League back in August.
“He was nervous and second guessing himself, whether it was on or off the pitch.
“What I did like about him was the way he trained. He’s super competitive, he’s really professional, and playing footy means something to him.
“He’s wanted to play NRL since he was a kid and you can see that in the way he goes about it.”
Featured Image Credit: Supplied/NRL
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