Super Rugby - Hurricanes
Jeff Toomaga-Allen tears medial ligament
May 27, 2013
Jeff Toomaga-Allen expects to return for Wellington Lions' ITM Cup campaign © Getty Images
Hurricanes prop Jeff Toomaga-Allen will miss the remainder of the Super Rugby season having been ruled out for eight weeks after tearing his medial ligament during the round 14 loss to the Chiefs.
The front-rower sustained the injury just days after being named in the All Blacks wider training group, and he said on Monday, after being ruled out for the rest of the Super Rugby season, that "I knew straightaway I wouldn't be going to the camp".
Toomaga-Allen, who has had previous lengthy spells on the sidelines with a back injury and a badly torn hamstring, has since received a call from the All Blacks scrum guru Mike Cron. "He said it was a bit unfortunate what had happened," Toomaga-Allen said. "I just said 'well that's rugby mate, it's a contact sport'. He just said to keep trucking along and to come back stronger and better and faster."
The prop does not require surgery so should be back in time for Wellington's ITM Cup campaign. "That's a positive I take out of it knowing I don't need surgery," he said. "It'll be a quick eight weeks and I'll be back for the ITM Cup so I'm looking forward to that."
His return will also give him a chance to stake a claim for the All Blacks' end-of-year tour. "Knowing that I'm coming back to play is excitement enough for me," Toomaga-Allen said. "I'll worry about the All Blacks later. The All Blacks will always be there. But Wellington, I really want to push for a championship. That's the next goal."
Toomaga-Allen is likely to be joined on the sidelines by openside flanker Jack Lam, who injured a medial ligament at training on Monday. Lam has had problems with his knees before but Hurricanes coach Mark Hammett was unsure of the extent of the injury. "Like most of these injuries they take 20-odd hours before we can assess them properly, ut he looked pretty sore," the coach said.
There was some positive news for Hammett though ahead of the trip to Canberra to face the Brumbies, with hooker Dane Coles and captain Conrad Smith - who are both at the All Blacks camp - cleared to play this weekend.