Twelve of Charlie Lister’s 20 strong open race team are currently lame including recent broken hocks for Newinn Shadow at Hove and Local Playboy at Yarmouth with the seriousness of an injury to Kalamoun still to be assessed.

The most successful trainer of all time said: “I have never known a time like it. We can’t carry on at this rate. It is so difficult to keep coming up with quality greyhounds and I am not prepared to ask owners to spend £30,000 for dogs, how can you justify it?

“As far as Newinn Shadow is concerned, he may recover to race again but given his age, I am not sure that it will be worth it. Hopefully Local Playboy will return one day.”

Lister believes the media rights battle is playing havoc with open racing with many of the smaller tracks unable to fill opens. As for the others. ., Lister added: “I would like to see more tracks putting their opens on earlier in the meeting. Kennel staff often have a long way to travel and might not get home until 1am. But then they are at work again at 7am.”