Fylde rugby club second row forward Gareth Gore is out of action until the New Year.
The former Preston Grasshoppers lock, who was a regular in the Woodlands team last season and proved to be a reliable and consistent performer, is due to go into hospital next week for an operation on his ankle.
Coach Mark Nelson said: “It has been a recurring, chronic problem that needs sorting out.
“Gareth has actually been training with us in pre-season but he will need time to recover and won’t be back until the back end of the year or the start of 2015.”
Gore’s place in the second row is likely to be filled by Gareth Rawlings, who has re-joined Fylde from Staffordshire club Longton during the close season.
Rawlings has been joined at Fylde by his brother Scott, a centre
Front row forward Tom Lavelle is likely to be back at Fylde in the New Year after a sojourn in Australia.
His return will add to Fylde’s forward options.
Nelson sats pre-season training is progressing positively.
He added: “I am very happy with the composition of the squad.
“There may be one or two more people to come into the squad during August, as sometimes happens, but as things stand I am confident we would be in a position to send out a very strong group of 20 players for the first match of the league season.”
That first match is at home to Blackheath on September 6.
Nelson added that the Fylde Hawks second XV squad was shaping up too.
He said: “Mark Stephenson has returned to the club as coach and has got a good squad. It is all coming together.”