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Rogers to miss Crusaders match

Fotopress

Wednesday, March 30, 2005    NZPA    Fotopress

Troubled by a groin injury suffered during the Waratahs trip to South Africa last month, Rogers, 29, failed a fitness test today and will miss his fourth successive match.

"I'm extremely disappointed, absolutely shattered not to be playing this week, especially at home in front of a great crowd in what will be a great game against the Crusaders," Rogers said today.

Team medical staff pulled Rogers from consideration after he struggled through a lengthy fitness test yesterday and another session today.

"I pulled up a little bit sore after doing a rehab session this morning, and I figured it would probably be best if I didn't do a 100 per cent run today," Rogers said.

"I could possibly get away with it, but I could also re-injure myself and miss the rest of the season. I figure if we were at the business end of the season winning games, no one's going to remember these few weeks I missed.

"We'll be working hard over the next six days, up until next Monday, when I'll hopefully go into full training in an attempt to get a full week under my belt before rejoining the team for the match against the Hurricanes (in Wellington on April 10)."

Coach Ewen McKenzie will name his team on Thursday although Peter Hewat is assured of retaining the fullback berth.

Hewat, who spent nine years at club level before earning a Super 12 contract this year, has been in sparkling form since replacing Rogers.

He scored a Waratahs record 34-point haul against the Bulls last Saturday, including three tries.

Meanwhile, injured first five-eighths Lachlan MacKay will be given until Thursday to prove his fitness after breaking a rib against the Sharks in the second round.