Charles Piutau: Bristol full-back set for October return from injury

Charles Piutau in action for Bristol
Charles Piutau played 17 Tests for the All Blacks between 2013 and 2015

Bristol Bears full-back Charles Piutau does not require surgery on a shoulder injury and could return to action by the end of October.

It had been feared the New Zealand international might have been ruled out for up to six months after being injured against Connacht in pre-season.

But head coach Pat Lam says the 26-year-old will be back in the "not too distant future".

Bristol beat Bath 17-10 in their first game back in the Premiership on Friday.

Piutau joined promoted Bristol from Pro 14 side Ulster over the off-season and is reportedly is the highest-paid player in the top flight on almost £1m a year.

"It's great that he won't be sidelined for too long," Lam said.

"We don't want to lose somebody of Charles' ability for any amount of time, but that's the nature of the sport and it really underlines the importance of having depth and quality in every position.

"Charles is a hugely positive person and he's raring to go with his recovery."