16 Jul 2015

Collapsed lung threatens NRL future

1:08 pm on 16 July 2015

The playing future of teenage Penrith Panthers back and Kiwis prospect Dallin Watene-Zelezniak is unclear after being admitted to hospital with a collapsed lung.

The 19-year-old was admitted to hospital after the onset of a genetic condition that results in the accumulation of air in the space between the lungs and chest cavity.

The NRL club doesn't know if his condition was triggered by a physical blow.

Watene-Zelezniak has twice been set to make his Kiwis test debut but been ruled out through either injury or suspension.

Dallin Watene-Zelezniak.

Dallin Watene-Zelezniak. Photo: Supplied

It's a major blow for Watene-Zelezniak and Penrith who are already without regular full-back Matt Moylan, who has an ankle injury, until round 23.

Watene-Zelezniak has excelled since stepping in to assume the number-one jumper in Moylan's absence.