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All Black star in doubt for Rugby Championship

NEWS: All Black star Will Jordan will be sidelined for the next six months and could rule him out of the Tests against South Africa in August.

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The Crusaders said on Tuesday that Jordan is set to be sidelined with a shoulder injury, ruling him out of the Super Rugby Pacific season.

Jordan, 25, needs surgery on a pre-existing injury from last season, the Crusaders said.

It is a blow to the defending Super Rugby champions who start their 2024 campaign under new head coach Rob Penney away to the Chiefs in Hamilton on Friday in a repeat of last year’s final.

“After assessment from the Crusaders medical team he will undergo surgery and as a result be unavailable for selection during the 2024 Super Rugby Pacific season,” the Crusaders said in a statement.

The fullback or wing is expected to return in “approximately six months”, the Crusaders added, meaning Jordan will miss the All Blacks matches in July with two home Tests against England and one with Fiji in San Diego.

He could also sit out half of the Rugby Championship for New Zealand in August and September.

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The Springboks are set to face the All Blacks in Johannesburg on August 31 and in Cape Town a week later.

Jordan has scored 31 tries in as many Tests for New Zealand since his debut in 2020.

He finished as top try-scorer at last year’s World Cup in France, touching down eight times including a hat-trick in the semifinal win over Argentina before New Zealand lost 11-12 to South Africa in the final.

The Crusaders had already suffered a pre-season injury setback with British and Irish Lions fullback Leigh Halfpenny sidelined for up to four months with a torn pectoral muscle.

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