Highlanders and All Black halfback Folau Fakatava has elected a non-operative approach initially for his injured knee. Fakatava injured his right knee, rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), prior to the All Blacks departure for the Northern tour.
He has suffered a similar injury during the 2021 Super Rugby season and returned in 2022 for the Highlanders, earning selection and his first test cap for the All Blacks against the Irish during the July Test Match series.
He is optimistic that with good rehabilitation he can get back on the field in 2023 and play a full part in the Highlanders’ season.
“I had surgery on my ACL in 2021 and I wanted to avoid going down that route again if I could, I am excited about getting into my rehab and giving myself the chance of giving 2023 a real go, obviously it’s a pretty big year”.
Fakatava will assemble with the Highlanders in November and begin his knee rehabilitation under the supervision of Highlanders’ medical staff.
To complete the Highlanders halfback stocks Head Coach Clarke Dermody has brought in former All Black halfback, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, as cover for Fakatava. Tahuriorangi has already made 63 Super Rugby appearances for the Hurricanes, Chiefs and Crusaders.
“I’m delighted to be able to get someone of his calibre and experience into our squad. He is a quality player, and we know he will be able to deliver for us when required” said Dermody.