In­jured Read to sit out warm-ups

New Straits Times - - Sport -

WELLING­TON: All Blacks cap­tain Kieran Read is un­likely to play any rugby be­fore the first Test against the Bri­tish and Ir­ish Lions on June 24 as he re­cov­ers from a bro­ken thumb.

The 31-year-old suf­fered the in­jury while play­ing for the Can­ter­bury Cru­saders against South Africa’s Chee­tahs on April 29 and had surgery. He was told he would need six weeks to re­cover, which would put his re­turn date around June 10.

A Test against Samoa on June 16 at Eden Park was seen as an ideal way for Read to get some match fit­ness be­fore the Lions series but he said yes­ter­day the longer he had on the side­lines, the bet­ter.

“At the mo­ment they are kind of say­ing you can’t use it for six weeks, which is a week be­fore the Samoa game,” Read told New Zealand’s Ra­dio Sport. “We’ll just have to see if I push it, or let things go be­fore that first test (against the Lions).

“It’s the type of in­jury where you can push it if you want to, but that in­creases the risk of a re­break.

“They say that six weeks is a bit of risk, seven weeks is only a slight risk, eight weeks you are pretty much sweet. The (risk) de­creases pretty quickly. It’s just a mat­ter of how you want to op­er­ate.”

Read, who also missed the first six weeks of Su­per Rugby as he re­cov­ered from wrist surgery, said he was still train­ing while pro­tect­ing his thumb and was not fazed about a lack of match fit­ness for the series-opener in Auck­land against War­ren Gat­land’s team.

“In terms of match fit­ness I won’t have too much, to be hon­est, go­ing into that first Test but I’ve done this gig a few times,” he added.

“I’ve got the con­fi­dence in my­self that I can turn up and play at a high level. I’ll back my­self and I’ll be good, ready to go.” Reuters

Kieran Read

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