The Canberra Raiders star wing Jordan Rapana will spend six months on the sidelines after it was determined his dislocated shoulder suffered while representing New Zealand will require surgery.
This rules the 2017 Dally M winger of the year out until late May 2019, meaning he won’t be available until at least round 11 in 2019.
Raiders Captain Jarrod Croker said the news is frustrating for the side.
“It’s very disappointing for Jordan; he’s been one of our best players for the last few years and is undoubtedly one of the best wingers in the world,” Croker said.
“To lose him for the first half of a season is extremely frustrating, but it gives someone like Michael Oldfield a chance, it also makes our backline a bit skinny.”
Croker is hopeful the Raiders can take advantage of the ‘Josh Hodgson’ rule, allowing for extra salary cap space to replace players injured in representative football.
Raiders half Ata Hingano is also on the long-term injury list, having undergone a shoulder reconstruction after a dislocation while representing Tonga against Australia last month. Hingano is expected to return in round 6-8, 2019.
New coach for Brumbies Women
The Brumbies Women will enter the second season of Super W Rugby Union with a new head coach, as local stalwart Adam Butt was named in the role for 2019.
Butt was first grade defence coach for the Royals men’s side that went undefeated in claiming the 2017 John I Dent Cup competition.
Butt said he is excited by the opportunity.
“With the way that the women’s game is growing and developing, I am looking forward to the challenge this competition brings.
“We have a very strong coaching group who are looking forward to getting the squad together and working hard to achieve success this season.”
Butt’s backroom staff will be led by Tevita Siulangapo as assistant coach, with Dave Anable named resource coach.