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Reece Hodge to miss remainder of Super Rugby season

(Photo by Speed Media/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Melbourne Rebels may swap one Wallabies star for another with Dane Haylett-Petty a chance to replace Reece Hodge, who will miss the rest of their Super Rugby campaign with a knee injury.


The utility back is expected to be out of action for about 10 weeks but hopes to be available for Australia’s three-Test series against France in July.

He suffered an MCL injury in a tackle by Western Force flanker Tim Anstee while making a last-gasp field goal attempt in Friday night’s 16-15 loss to the Western Force.

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Haylett-Petty hasn’t played this season after battling ongoing symptoms from a head knock sustained in last year’s Sydney Bledisloe Cup clash in late October.

There were fears it could force the 31-year-old fullback into retirement.

However the Rebels have been buoyed by news that Haylett-Petty may be available for Sunday afternoon’s crucial Super Rugby AU clash with the Brumbies at AAMI Park.

Melbourne coach Dave Wessels said his captain would be tested at training on Tuesday, with their last round match against the Waratahs another option.


“Dane is a chance, which would be great for us,” Wessels told AAP.

“He’s very keen to play; emotionally also he wants to be part of it now, he knows it’s his time to step forward.”

Melbourne are also hopeful Test five-eighth Matt Toomua will be available after failing a HIA on Friday night, with his case helped by their nine-day break between games.

The Rebels blew a golden chance to lock in a top-three finals berth when the Force scored a late try to snatch a 16-15 win.


They are now just one point clear of the Force and in a desperate battle for the remaining finals spot, with the Reds and Brumbies already qualified.

While disappointed to have let the match against the Perth side slip after leading until the 77th minute, Wessels said his team were still fairly upbeat.

“It’s been a crazy year as there’s been three games that we’ve lost after the bell so we could easily be five from six but the fact is that we are not,” Wessels said.

“We need to be tougher on ourselves about why we’re not executing in those big moments in games.

“We’re not miles away – we have our destiny in our own hands and the boys are still feeling pretty good about it as they know that for large parts of those games we did some pretty good things and dominated but unfortunately couldn’t finish it off.”


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