Hernandez in World Cup fitness race
March 17, 2011
Juan Martin Hernandez was a major part of Argentina's World Cup campaign in 2007 © Getty Images
Juan Martin Hernandez faces a race to be fit for Argentina's Rugby World Cup campaign after undergoing surgery on a knee ligament injury.
The 28-year-old Racing Metro fly-half was injured on club duty at the beginning of March, having already missed a chunk of the season due to a thigh problem, and faces five months on the sidelines.
Argentina begin their World Cup against England on September 10, with chief surgeon Mario Larrain refusing to rule Hernandez out at this stage.
"Everything went well," he told AFP It was a difficult operation and we are now hoping that the body does its work in terms of healing. It will take at least five months for him to be able to resume playing rugby.
"It is still possible that he can play at the World Cup but we have to wait and see how his rehabilitation evolves."
Pumas team doctor Guillermo Botto had earlier predicted a six-month absence for Hernandez, one of the stars of their march to third place in 2007.
"Usually this kind of surgery takes six months to recover from. And we're exactly six months away from the World Cup," he said. "So we have to be optimistic and work towards that. He will obviously not have the ideal training, and will miss the rhythm of playing matches before the World Cup, but he may be fit to play in New Zealand."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Munster, No.8s, the imploding Australians, wonderful Glasgow and Lancaster's dilemma - it is Monday Maul time
As Ewen McKenzie exits stage left, the ARU remains under huge pressure, with CEO Bill Pulver feeling the brunt of Australian rugby's displeasure, Greg Growden writes
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the remarkable events in Brisbane and the first round of the European Rugby Champions Cup
Following Saturday's shock announcement, we look at the highs and the lows of Ewen McKenzie's brief stint as Wallabies coach.