The Highlanders suffered a setback in the build-up to their Super 14 Round Six encounter with the Western Force in Queenstown on Saturday when it was confirmed that wing Lucky Mulipola’s hopes of a return to action this season has evaporated.
Rugby 365 reports that it was revealed on Wednesday that the not so lucky Mulipola has been ruled out of the Super 14 after breaking an arm in the first round against the Reds.
Mulipola joins Ezra Taylor on the sidelines, while Highlanders management look for two replacements to add to the squad.
Matthew Saunders, Glen Horton and Ben W Smith, members of the Highlanders’ wider training group, will train with the Highlanders over the next two weeks prior to a decision being made.
Highlanders coach Glenn Moore said he will not be rushing into a decision.
“The whole squad composition is being looked at and there is no reason to hurry, as we are confident we have the cover in the squad at the moment,” Moore said.
* Meanwhile the Highlanders coach made four changes to his team for the encounter with the Force on Saturday.
In the only change to the backline Aaron Bancroft comes in at inside centre to replace Johnny Leota.
Tim Boys will start at openside flank in place of Alando Soaki, Tom Donnelly is in at lock for Isaac Ross and Chris King will be at tighthead prop at the expense of Clint Newland.
Highlanders: 15 James Wilson, 14 Paul Williams, 13 Niva Ta’auso, 12 Aaron Bancroft, 11 Fetu’u Vainikolo, 10 Daniel Bowden, 9 Jimmy Cowan (vice-captain), 8 Steven Setephano, 7 Tim Boys, 6 Craig Newby (captain), 5 Tom Donnelly, 4 Hoani MacDonald, 3 Chris King, 2 Jason Macdonald, 1 Jamie Mackintosh.
Replacements: 16 David Hall, 17 Keith Cameron, 18 Hayden Triggs, 19 Adam Thomson, 20 Toby Morland, 21 Mike Delany, 22 Brett Mather.