Blues and All Blacks lock Patrick Tuipulotu has been ruled out of the Super Rugby Pacific playoffs after sustaining a broken arm.
Coach Leon MacDonald confirmed Tuipulotu’s injury on Monday and said he would be sidelined for six weeks.
That will include Friday night’s quarterfinal against the Waratahs at Eden Park and the semifinals or the final, if the Blues were to progress.
It’s not clear when Tuipulotu suffered the injury, but MacDonald said he played on and was seemingly oblivious to its severity until he was in a protective cast after full-time at Eden Park.
”It’s brutally demoralising [for him],” MacDonald said.
“He missed last year [while in Japan] and he was really excited about being in a Blues jersey this year."
“I thought he was really starting to hit his straps, with his form and his leadership, and he is a key player in our team.