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Rugby World Cup
Ioane suffers fractured thumb
ESPNscrum Staff
September 12, 2011
Australia's Digne Ioane enjoys the moment as he scores his first try of the World Cup, Australia v Italy, Rugby World Cup, North Harbour Stadium, Auckland, New Zealand, September 11, 2011
Ioane scored in Australia's opening clash with Italy © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Digby Ioane | Drew Mitchell | James O'Connor
Tournaments/Tours: IRB Rugby World Cup
Teams: Australia

Australia have suffered a blow ahead of their clash with Ireland on Saturday with the news that star winger Digby Ioane has suffered a fractured thumb.

Ioane sustained the injury during yesterday's 32-6 Pool C win over Italy after accidentally coming into contact with the boot of Mirco Bergamasco and the fracture was confirmed following scans on Monday. However, 26-year-old will be operated on and will remain with the Wallabies in New Zealand with a view to playing later in the tournament.

"Ioane will be operated on and will remain with the Wallabies in New Zealand," said a team statement. "He is expected to be available to play again later in the tournament although the exact timelines on when he might be able to return will not be known until after the joint has been operated on, and his rehabilitation from the injury has begun."

In Ioane's place, Robbie Deans has some accomplished wingers to call upon. James O'Connor came onto the field for the second-half and impressed for the Wallabies while they also have Drew Mitchell lying in wait.

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