A devastated Richie Fa'aoso has been ruled out of next Sunday's NRL grand final, with Manly's impact prop suffering a broken neck in Friday's preliminary final victory over South Sydney.

Fa'aoso, who has had issues with concussion in recent seasons, sustained a fracture of his C7 vertebrae during the first half of Manly's 30-20 win.

The injury occurred when Fa'aoso, who won a premiership with Melbourne last year, was involved in a heavy collision with Souths forwards Jeff Lima and Roy Asotasi while attempting to breach the Rabbitohs' tryline.

There were initial fears the 29-year-old journeyman could be forced into retirement, but in a statement released by the Manly club on Sunday they were allayed.

He won't line up in the season decider against the Roosters, but the club says Fa'aoso will be ready for next season.

"The Sea Eagles medical staff is confident there will be no longterm issues and Richard will be back to 100 per cent by the start of the 2014 season," the statement read.

"Understandably Richie is devastated about missing the game."

Earlier this year Penrith prop Sam McKendry played 14 minutes after fracturing his C6 vertebrae against Parramatta, before being sidelined for four months and returning to first grade in August.

Fa'aoso played 18 games in his first season at Manly, becoming a valued member of the interchange bench.

His grand final spot will likely be filled by either David Gower or James Hasson, both of whom were named on an extended bench for the Rabbitohs fixture.

 

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