Dane Coles: All Blacks hooker could miss six months with ruptured ACL

Dane Coles
Coles crossed after just nine minutes as the All Blacks beat France 38-18

New Zealand hooker Dane Coles could be out for six months after injuring his knee in Saturday's win over France.

The 30-year-old Hurricanes captain, who missed the 2017 Lions series, will return to New Zealand immediately for surgery on his ruptured ACL ligament.

"Head coach Steve Hansen says he will require an operation with a likely four to six-month recovery," wrote the All Blacks on Twitter.

New Zealand play Scotland on Saturday and Wales a week later.

Coles, who has won 56 caps and is regarded as one of the world's finest hookers, crossed for the All Blacks' first try against France but was replaced by Codie Taylor after 13 minutes having twisted his knee.

He was named in the All Blacks' squad for the Tests with the British and Irish Lions but concussion symptoms limited his game time for the Hurricanes and he was not deemed fit enough by Hansen to face Warren Gatland's tourists.

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