SIDELINED: Lachlan Coote.
SIDELINED: Lachlan Coote.

Luckless Coote out for season

NORTH Queensland Cowboys fullback Lachlan Coote will be out for a minimum of six months after scans confirmed the former Penrith player ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.

Coote, who in September was released from the final year of his contract at the Panthers before signing a three-year deal Cowboys, lasted just seven minutes of the Auckland Nines tournament before injuring himself.

He was sent for scans in Auckland on Saturday, which confirmed the worst fears.

Coote will undergo surgery when the Cowboys return to Australia.

He was replaced in the Nines squad by Anthony Mitchell.

"Obviously this is very disappointing news for Lachlan and the Cowboys, especially when we were all looking forward to his first season with us," Cowboys coach Paul Green said.

"Lachlan will receive the best possible treatment and we'll look forward to welcoming him back onto the field once his rehabilitation is complete.

"He's a talented young footballer who still has many seasons ahead of him.

"We believe we have a talented group of players ready to fill the fullback role this year and this opens up an opportunity for one of them for round one against Canberra."