Wallaby full back Kurtley Beale has suffered yet another injury setback.
One of the expected stars of the 2013 Lions tour to Australia has broken down in training ahead of the latest round of Super 15 action.
Beale had been hoping to win a place in the Melbourne Rebels’ starting line up for this Sunday’s clash with the Cheetahs at AAMI Park but a calf problem will prevent him from doing so.
The 23-year-old complained of pain during the warm-up yesterday and a scan has since revealed a small tear, although the injury is only expected to keep him out of contention for an extra week.
"All of our outside backs do an extended warm-up and at the back end of that Kurtley said his calf didn't feel right. So he got a scan and it revealed a small tear," said Rebels boss Damien Hill.
"It's nothing serious but bad enough for us to take the season in total on board, and we couldn't risk it. At this stage we hope to have him right for the Force (in Round 5 on March 23)."
Beale is yet to appear for his new franchise after a summer move from the Waratahs, with a hamstring injury having stopped him from appearing so far.
He missed the World Cup semi-final defeat to New Zealand as a result of hamstring worries and was then forced out of the Bronze Medal win over Wales after only nine minutes after a re-occurrence of the problem.
The Wallabies then toured the UK without Beale in late November and early December, with one of the game’s global greats now not having played for fully five months.