Teenager Petaia's World Cup dream hit by injury
Brisbane - Reds young gun Jordan Petaia's Super Rugby season could be over, with his dream of playing at the Rugby World Cup in jeopardy after a serious foot injury against the Crusaders.
The highly-rated fullback hobbled off after 15 minutes on Saturday with scans reportedly showing a ligament problem which the Rugby Australia website said would effectively end his season.
Such injuries can involve up to four months' recovery, which would make him available for the start of the Wallabies build-up to the World Cup, but a lack of playing time could count against him.
The Reds had no immediate comment.
Petaia, just 18, was one of a handful of players whose early season form was praised over the weekend by Wallabies coach Michael Cheika.
He was considered a genuine contender to make the squad for the World Cup in Japan, having just missed out on a debut against Italy last year due to injury.
"He looked a bit ginger ... it wasn't great losing him early," Reds coach Brad Thorn told reporters after the game.
"He's a great young talent."