Crusaders have been dealt an injury blow ahead of the 2024 Super Rugby Pacific season with fullback Leigh Halfpenny is set to miss the majority of the upcoming campaign due to a chest injury.
Halfpenny sustained the injury during Crusaders' pre-season fixture against Munster which his side went on to lose 19-21.
According to Crusaders assistant coach Tamati Ellison revealed that the 35-year-old is set to undergo a surgery which could keep him on the sidelines for three to four months.
“It is a real bummer for him,” Ellison said.
“He will still help, even during his rehab period around some of the kicking and the game-driving for a few of our younger boys. He has been great there already.
“We’re expecting him to play, if the rehab goes well".
Halfpenny joined Crusaders this year and has featured 101 times for Wales apart from four appearances for the British and Irish Lions that came across 2009, 2013 and 2017 tours.
He announced his retirement from international rugby following the Rugby World Cup campaign last year in France.
Crusaders will kick-start their 2024 Super Rugby Pacific campaign with a clash against the Chiefs on 23rd February.