Roberto Rolfo has reiterated his intentions to start the 2009 World Superbike season, despite initial fears he would need to undergo a shoulder operation in the coming weeks.

The Italian, who will this season race with the Stiggy Honda team, revealed before the Portimao test that he had turned down the opportunity to correct an injury to his shoulder in order to compete from the start of the year.

However, after completing only a handful of laps in Portugal and complaining of the discomfort he was in, Rolfo admitted he would reconsider his plans.

Raising speculation that his seat alongside Leon Haslam could become available, Kawasaki MotoGP refugees John Hopkins and Marco Melandri had been quickly linked to a Superbike move.

Nonetheless, Rolfo insists he will be ready for the start of the season having received further consolation from the doctors. His participation, however, is dependent on regular check-ups over the weekend and an operation at the end of the season.

"My mood is a lot more upbeat now that Prof. Porcellini has had a look at my injury in Forl?. He said to me that my shoulder is not that bad and with the right treatment I can rider a bike, maybe with the help of some protection.

"We've already planned a schedule, and during race weekends I'm be able to continue with the help of the Clinica Mobile. I feel sure everything will be OK in Australia".