Blues fullback Zarn Sullivan diagnosed with another significant knee injury

In what looked to be a breakout year for Zaren Sullivan, the Blues full-back was diagnosed with a torn meniscus and will undergo surgery on Thursday.

Surgery will reveal the extent of the injury but an initial estimate puts the Māori All Black on the sidelines for at least one month.

The injury came just 23 minutes after the 23-year-old returned after a six-week absence due to a posterior cruciate ligament injury.

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The play on which this latest injury occurred saw Sullivan demand a long kick and look to attack the Hurricanes' line, only to move away and hit the ground before any defender could reach him.

“It was a tough night when I did that and I know I'm going to have to sit out for a while again,” Sullivan said.

“Having just come back from injury, I was ready to go but I know this is all part of the sport and I will have this surgery, rehabilitate and then get back on the park as soon as possible.

“I also want to thank everyone for their kind messages and well wishes, it means a lot and I hope everyone can get behind the Blues in this exciting part of the season.”

There was a poignant moment as the Blues star lay on the ground in pain, surrounded by medical staff as his brother, Belin, who starts at center for rival Wellington, came to check on his distressed sibling.

While Sullivan has been sidelined since Round 5, fellow Blues young star Cole Forbes has taken over a starting role in the No.15 jersey.

On the same day the Blues announced Sullivan's injury, the team also announced Forbes' new contract which will see the former Glasgow veteran stay in Auckland until 2026.

Forbes took to the court after Sullivan's departure from Saturday's heavyweight clash between the top two teams and helped the Auckland side to a decisive win over the in-form Hurricanes.

After the match, Blues coach Vern Cotter spoke about his star's injury problems.

“That was his other knee. He did the other side. We backed up his good target very well and he blew up the other one,” Cotter said.

“That's really bad luck. I saw him on Earth again.”

Sullivan's early exit from the game left the youngster on the bench alongside fellow injured Blues stars Finlay Christie, Steven Perofeta and Riko Ioane.

“It's part of the game. We've got a few more hits in there, too,” Cotter added.

“It was a physical game and the medical team will be busy tonight and tomorrow and will come on Monday morning to fix everyone and I think that will be the theme that will continue until the end of the season.

“There are no easy matches from now on, and it will take its toll, so we have to take care of ourselves.”


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