Kaino ruled out for six months
March 12, 2012
Jerome Kaino will be out of action for most of the year © Getty Images
All Blacks and Blues back-rower Jerome Kaino will be forced to watch from the sidelines for at least six months due to a shoulder injury.
Kaino, New Zealand's 2011 Player of the Year, suffered the injury in the Blues' 29-14 Super Rugby loss to the Chiefs. After initially playing through the problem, believing it to be related to a previous knock, Kaino will now undergo surgery on Wednesday after the pain failed to subside.
The surgery will see Kaino miss out on the remainder of the Super Rugby season for the Blues, while the All Blacks are likely to be without his services for much of of the Rugby Championship Test series against Australia, South Africa and Argentina.
Kaino did not travel to Pretoria at the weekend as the Blues claimed a 29-23 win over the Bulls and said the news that surgery will be required came as a shock.
"I'm gutted. I really didn't think this was going to take me out of the whole Blues season," Kaino said. "It certainly helped seeing the guys have a good win at Loftus in the weekend."
Blues coach Pat Lam echoed Kaino's sentiments, believing the 28-year-old's injury to be a huge blow to the Auckland-based side.
"It's a big loss for us and New Zealand rugby but that's unfortunately the nature of the game,'' Lam told LiveSport. "It's unfortunate for us but we can't do anything about it. It just gives others opportunities and Chris Lowery stepped up very well for us at the weekend. That's what you want when you lose a top class player, the young ones to step through and pick up the role."
And in a further blow for the Blues, winger Rene Ranger has been hit with a two week ban for a high tackle on Bjorn Basson.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Italy coach Jacques Brunel spoke to ESPN ahead of his final season as Italy coach and tells of his desire to experiment and evolve
"There's no bull with me, I just tell it straight." Tom Hamilton talks to Warren Gatland in an exclusive interview
With the retirement of Adam Jones, Welsh rugby says goodbye to a great player and one of its biggest personalities too, writes Tom Hamilton
Cards, kicks, slips and scores: It's The Week in Pictures, the finest snaps from the last seven days of rugby