Faumuina in doubt for Tests
Wellington - All Blacks prop Charlie Faumuina will miss the rest of the Blues' Super Rugby season with a calf injury and is in doubt for New Zealand's Test series against France, officials said on Monday.
Faumuina, 26, tore a calf muscle against the Waratahs last month and Blues coach John Kirwan said the latest medical advice was that he would take up to 14 weeks to recover.
That not only ends his Super Rugby season but would also sideline him for the three-Test series against France in June, the first clash between the sides since New Zealand beat the French 8-7 in the 2011 Rugby World Cup final.
Kirwan said medics had advised Faumuina risked suffering a recurrence of the injury if he was rushed back too soon, so Sam Prattley had been called up to replace him on the Blues' playing roster.
He said losing Faumuina was a "major blow" for the Blues, who are seventh on the ladder after three wins and three losses, but bringing him back too early could jeopardise his long-term career.
"He needs to get on top of this injury so keeping the team in mind and Charlie's future in mind we've decided to replace him," said Kirwan.