New Zealand Rugby
Ranger doubtful, McAlister cleared for All Blacks
ESPNscrum Staff
September 27, 2010
Northland's Rene Ranger looks for options, Counties Manukau v Northland, Bayer Growers Stadium, Pukekohe, New Zealand, September 26, 2010
Rene Ranger looks for options during Northland's loss to Counties Manukau © Getty Images

Rene Ranger is in doubt for the All Blacks' northern hemisphere tour but Luke McAlister has been cleared of the broken jaw that would have definitely ruled him out.

Northland's star back, Ranger suffered a hamstring injury in his side's 24-40 ITM Cup loss to Counties Manukau on Sunday, and initial fears were of a serious tear and up to six weeks on the sideline.

But further tests on Monday pointed to a grade one or two tear, Northland coach Bryce Woodward said, which could mean between two and four weeks out and the possibility Ranger could be fit in time to tour.

"Certainly he won't be playing against Waikato or Hawke's Bay, and there's a question mark about the game against Tasman," Woodward said.

The Tasman game is scheduled for October 17, the same day the All Blacks' touring party will be named.

Meanwhile, McAlister has been cleared of any serious injury after he was forced to leave the field with an injured jaw early in the second half of North Harbour's 44-30 win against Manawatu in Albany.

It was feared McAlister's jaw had been broken but it was only bruised, North Harbour confirmed on Monday. McAlister was expected to play a full part in training this week and be available for the match against Counties-Manukau in Pukekohe on Sunday.


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