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James Horwill misses Reds' season opener
February 6, 2013
Reds skipper James Horwill is helped from the field with injury, Brumbies v Reds, Super Rugby, Canberra Stadium, Canberra, Australia, May 26, 2012
James Horwill and the Reds are adopting a cautious approach. © Getty Images
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James Horwill will miss Queensland Reds' Super Rugby season opener against the Brumbies in Canberra with an ankle injury.

Horwill, who missed the entire Wallabies campaign in 2012, with a serious hamstring injury, rolled an ankle in a training mishap last week.

He expects to return in round two, against New South Wales in Brisbane.

"As we've done all off-season, we've taken a cautious approach with James and his rehab," Ewen McKenzie, the Reds coach, said. "And on this occasion, we all agreed it would be best to give him another week on the sideline. But as we said last week, his ankle is only a minor setback and we fully expect him to be healthy when we play our first game of the year at Suncorp Stadium next week."

James Slipper will captain the Reds in James Horwill's absence.

"It's extremely humbling to be chosen as captain for the Reds, especially when you think about the many great captains Queensland has produced over the years," Slipper said.

"On a personal level it will be a very satisfying moment leading the Reds out on Saturday, but at the end of the day we are there to get a job done and that's to beat the Brumbies. It's a huge game to start our year, and the Brumbies proved last year what a quality side they can be. We'll need to be at the top of our game if we are going to walk away with the result we're after."

Slipper was the Reds standout performer in 2012, playing every game and winning the Pilecki Medal awarded to the players' Player of the Year.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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