Injured Vunivalu to miss making Wallabies debut vs France

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GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — Former National Rugby League winger Suliasi Vunivalu has a hamstring injury and will miss making his debut for the Wallabies in the three-test series against France.

Vunivalu limped off the field in Queensland’s 31-24 Super Rugby Trans-Tasman loss to the Auckland-based Blues last weekend. Australia coach Dave Rennie says the injury is significant enough to rule Vunivalu out of the July series.

“Obviously a reasonably serious hamstring injury,” Rennie said Thursday. “That’s going to see him miss the French series and we’ll know a little bit more detail beyond that but he certainly won’t be available for France.”

Rennie said he hoped the Fiji-born Vunivalu, who played five seasons and 111 matches with the NRL's Melbourne Storm before switching to rugby union, will have an opportunity to make his test debut later in the international season.

Injured flyhalf James O’Connor is expected to be included when Rennie names his squad for the French series on Sunday. The Queensland captain was a late scratch for the game against the Blues because of a neck injury and he hasn’t traveled to New Zealand for the Reds' last Super Rugby match against the Hurricanes in Wellington.

The Wallabies will play France three times in 11 days — July 7 in Sydney, July 13 in Melbourne and July 17 in Brisbane.


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