News in Brief
Parisse facing six months out
Scrum.com
November 30, 2009
Italy skipper Sergio Parisse offers dome instruction to his side, Italy v France, Six Nations Championship, Flaminio Stadium, Rome, Italy, March 21, 2009
The loss of Sergio Parisse is a cruel blow to Italy's Six Nations hopes © Getty Images
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  • Italy captain Sergio Parisse underwent knee surgery today and will be sidelined for six months.

    The Stade Francais flanker had his anterior cruciate ligament reconstructed in his right knee after getting hurt in training this week. As a result Parisse will miss all of the Azzurri's 2010 Six Nations campaign.

    Italy's national team doctor Gianluca Melegati said in a statement, "The surgery has gone well and the player will be released from hospital on Tuesday. Parisse will be able to walk with the help of crutches and will immediately begin physiotherapy. The time of recovery is estimated at 180 days."

    Nick Mallett's Italy ended a 13-game losing streak by beating Samoa 24-6 yesterday in Ascoli Piceno.

  • Leeds have signed former England hooker Andy Titterrell on a three-month deal. The 2005 British & Irish Lions tourist has been without a club since leaving Gloucester during the summer.

  • Former Australia international Justin Harrison will return to Australia for the new Super 14 season after being handed a lifeline by one of his former sides - the ACT Brumbies.

    The 35-year-old is currently serving an eight-month suspension after admitting to three drug-related charges while playing for Guinness Premiership club Bath. Harrison was banned in July for "actions which are prejudicial to the interests of the game". He admitted taking a prohibited substance during an end-of-season celebration in London and of subsequently failing to submit to a drugs test.

    The suspension was back-dated to May 14, the day Harrison resigned from Bath and withdrew from the Barbarians tour. He will be available to play for the Brumbies from January 13, 2010. Harrison trained with the Canberra-based club for the first time on Monday morning and hopes to have an immediate impact on his new team-mates.

    "After finishing up with Bath, I sat down and ranked the countries and clubs I wanted to play with," he said. "I listed the Brumbies at number one even though it was an unlikely scenario at the time. Now that I'm here I couldn't be happier. It's an environment I know very well and is backed up by quality coaching staff and administration.

    "I loved being a part of this community and I know that this is the best place in the world for me to be playing my rugby. I've made mistakes during my career but the next 12 months is a chance for me to rectify my professional reputation and put back into the game I've had a love affair with for the past 16 years," Harrison said.

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