18 Feb 2009

All Blacks ruled out of Highlanders clash with Hurricanes

7:01 pm on 18 February 2009

The Highlanders have suffered a major setback ahead of their Super 14 encounter with the Hurricanes in Wellington on Friday night, with All Black duo Jimmy Cowan and Jamie Mackintosh ruled out through injury.

Cowan, the Highlanders skipper and halfback, has an injured elbow while prop Mackintosh has an injured knee.

Fetu'u Vainikolo has been bracketed on the left wing with Kenny Lynn - with Vainikolo the subject of a New Zealand rugby union investigation following an incident at a Dunedin bar in the early hours of Sunday morning after the Highlander opening round loss to the ACT Brumbies.