Rua Tipoki’s injury woe continues with word now from Munster coach Tony McGahan that the talented centre will miss the province’s Heineken Cup quarter-final clash with the Ospreys next week.
Rua Tipoki, a crucial member of Munster’s 2008 Heineken Cup-winning side, has endured an injury-ravaged season.
The former New Zealand Maori captain has only had four full 80-minute run-outs for Munster to date in the 2008/09 campaign, with his last outings against Montauban (in October), New Zealand (in November) and Ulster (in January) being curtailed by injury.
The 33-year-old centre has been troubled most recently by hamstring problems, adding to a long term medial knee ligament injury.
In his absence, Lifeimi Mafi was partnered in Munster’s midfield by Keith Earls for their final two pool games in January.
Ireland international Earls looks set to start at centre for the Ospreys game, although Barry Murphy will also come into consideration.
In further bad news for the Munster camp, prop Darragh Hurley is set to miss the remainder of the season due to a back problem.
He played in last week’s Magners League win over Glasgow Warriors but this latest injury is expected to sideline the Cork Constitution clubman for the next six to eight weeks.