August 28, 2017 / 7:13 AM / 7 months ago

More openside flanker woes for All Blacks after Todd breaks hand

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - All Blacks coach Steve Hansen will have to reassess his options at openside flanker after Matt Todd was ruled out for four weeks with a broken hand on Monday.

Rugby Union - All Blacks Press Conference - Sydney, Australia - August 17, 2017 New Zealand All Blacks rugby union coach Steve Hansen drinks water during a press conference before the first Bledisloe Cup game against Australia's Wallabies. REUTERS/Jason Reed

With Sam Cane failing a head injury assessment during Saturday’s Rugby Championship win over Australia, and Ardie Savea the only other specialist number seven, Todd had been expected to be drafted into the squad as cover for the Sept. 9 game against Argentina.

However, the 29-year-old, who has eight test caps, five of which came last year, broke his hand in Canterbury’s national provincial championship clash with Otago in Christchurch on Sunday.

“Matt Todd had a scan following Sunday’s match against Otago, which has confirmed a fractured left hand,” the Canterbury Rugby Union said in a statement on Monday.

“He has been seen by a hand specialist who, along with team medical staff, will continue to monitor his recovery.

“Matt will be in a splint for four weeks at which stage he will be reviewed by the specialist before being cleared to play.”

After hosting the Pumas, the All Blacks face South Africa in Auckland on Sept. 16. They then travel to face Argentina on Sept. 30 and finish their Rugby Championship campaign in Cape Town against the Springboks on Oct. 7.

Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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