Rebels lose Sexton to injury
Melbourne - Australia's Rebels have been dealt a major blow with news on Friday that Irish recruit Tom Sexton is set to miss the entire 2014 Super Rugby season with a knee injury.
The Melbourne-born hooker, who joined the Rebels from Leinster, injured the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee during the pre-season and is destined for a long stint on the sidelines, the club said.
Rehabilitation from ACL surgery typically takes six to nine months for complete recovery.
"Obviously it is a very big disappointment to lose somebody of Tom's on-field ability," Rebels head coach Tony McGahan said.
"He has been impressing everybody with his commitment to training and his ability to acclimatise to the warm weather.
"Tom's personality around the club has already seen him emerge as a favourite of the playing group, and the manner in which he has responded to this setback speaks volumes of Tom as a man."
The Rebels said Sexton, 23, joined on a two-year deal and they are committed to helping him play Super Rugby for the club in the future.
Sexton will be utilised by the club in a non-playing capacity on game day, the Rebels said.
There was no word at this stage on a replacement.
The Super Rugby season kicks off in late February.