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Bristol reveal 'season-ending' operation for Radradra this week

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Pat Scaasi/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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Bristol boss Pat Lam has confirmed that Semi Radradra is set to undergo knee surgery for the second time in six months, bringing a premature end to his 2021/22 season with the Gallagher Premiership club. It was October when the Fijian midfielder was initially sidelined with a knee injury that required an operation and that put the start of his season on hold. 

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It was originally described as a potential four-month layoff but the setback only kept him out until the start of December. However, it has now been revealed by Bristol that Radradra will have a procedure on his other knee this week and won’t be involved again until the start of the 2022/23 campaign.  

“Unfortunately Semi is having knee surgery this week so that is season-ending for him which gives him a good chance to rehab, recoup and be ready for the start of next season which will be a positive for him,” explained Lam on Wednesday about Radradra at his weekly Bristol media briefing. 

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The decision to go for an operation this week and not at the end of the season was accelerated by last Friday’s exit by the Bears from the Heineken Champions Cup. “It’s the other knee but the beauty about it is it will be cleaned up by Jonathan Webb (the ex-England full-back who is now a knee surgeon) and then be ready to go for next season. That was the thing (with exiting Europe), it was time to get it done, to be ready for next season).”

The Bristol casualty list didn’t end there this week, however, as Lam added that England tighthead Kyle Sinckler will be kept out of the action for the next while, Siva Naulago was undergoing a knee operation on Wednesday while Charles Piutau suffered another setback and will be unavailable to face Gloucester this weekend.  

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“Kyle has had niggles since the Six Nations so he will take a bit of time now to try and clear around his back and we will work closely with the England medical team with that one,” explained Lam. “Siva has gone in for surgery, he has had his surgery already and the rest are niggles. Charles unfortunately trained on Monday but had a slight groin strain so he has been ruled out this week.

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“Ioan (Lloyd) is not far away. He broke his cheekbone in the Bath game, took a big knee to that, so he is not far. We are hoping if not next week, definitely the week after. There is a break for Europe so he definitely will be ready for the Exeter game, but he is a possibility for next week.”

The final word on the injury front was about Richard Lane, the full-back Bristol signed on loan after he had played in the Championship as recently as February 27 at Nottingham for Bedford. He started last Friday’s Champions Cup game versus Sale but was soon in the wars to an extent that didn’t immediately reveal itself to Lam and co. 

“About seven minutes into the game he got stood on. I think Arron Reed went to step left and he landed right on top of Richard’s foot, so it broke this third bone in his foot but what a trooper. He went right the way to half-time, just limped around and he made a try-saving tackle when they poked their nose through. 

“We thought it was just bruising on his foot but he knew he was only doing 40 anyway and Charles would do second 40. But he gutted it out and when was saw the scans and it was a clean break. That’s tough.”

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