Huxley's hopes crushed

2009-01-07 10:01
Dream crushed (File)
Canberra - Julian Huxley's hopes of returning to rugby has been dealt a crushing blow with Brumbies coach Andy Friend revealing the utility will not play any part in this year's Super 14 season.

Huxley, 29, was diagnosed with a brain tumour after suffering a fit during a game against his former side the Reds in March last year.

The six-Test Wallaby then underwent surgery to remove the tumour and endured daily radiation therapy while he worked towards making a comeback.

However, doctors have advised against Huxley returning to action and forced him out of pre-season training.

Brumbies coach Andy Friend said on Wednesday that Huxley is taking some time out from his role as the club's kicking coach to deal with the news that his comeback bid, and possibly his career, is over.

"We won't see him return to rugby this year," Friend said.

"He's been working with the players up until Christmas time with the kicking and he's currently taking a break for the month of January and just assessing things.

"It's been a difficult period for him given as he had an expectation that he wanted to play again but medically that opportunity has been taken away from him.

"He's just got to do some personal soul searching, if you like, and find out what it is that he wants to do but having him around here as a person is motivational for everybody and we hope that he'll stay with us."

The Brumbies are ramping up their pre-season training in preparation for two trial matches against the Hurricanes at Canberra Stadium on January 30 and the Waratahs at the Sydney Football Stadium on February 5.

They will then head to Dunedin for their first Super 14 fixture against the Highlanders at Carisbrook.


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