Blow for Australia as lock Timani ruled out of Lions series
AUSTRALIA'S injury problems continued today with powerful lock Sitaleki Timani ruled out of the three-test series against the British and Irish Lions because of a broken thumb.
The New South Wales Waratahs second row suffered the injury in a Super Rugby encounter against the Canterbury Crusaders on Friday and would require surgery, the Wallabies said in a statement.
Timani's Waratahs team mate Kane Douglas had already been called up to the Australia squad yesterday as cover but the loss of the Tonga-born 26-year-old is a big blow as he was a likely starter for the first test in Brisbane on June 22.
The Wallabies said Timani was expected to be fit for the start of the Rugby Championship against New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina in August.
Australia are also waiting on injury news about loose forward Scott Higginbotham, who dislocated his shoulder in the Melbourne Rebels loss to the Queensland Reds on Saturday.
The in-form Rebels skipper underwent scans on Monday but would be reassessed when the swelling subsides, the Wallabies said.
The Wallabies have suffered a host of injury problems ahead of the series with flanker David Pocock ruled out completely, while winger Digby Ioane, hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau and openside George Smith have all been unable to take part in the ongoing training camp in Sydney because of knocks.