29 Oct 2008

Kiwis suffer another injury blow at rugby league world cup

2:29 pm on 29 October 2008

The Kiwis have suffered another World Cup rugby league injury blow, with forward Sika Manu ruled out of the rest of the tournament with a fractured eye socket.

The Melbourne Storm second-rower took a heavy blow to his right eye during Sunday's loss to Australia in Sydney.

The team doctor Simon Mayhew says an x-ray yesterday revealed the fracture and while it's not serious Manu risks damaging his eyesight if he continued to play.

Mayhew says at this stage Manu doesn't need surgery but the injury's expected to take four to eight weeks to heal.

Manu's place in the starting side for Saturday's pool match against Papua New Guinea has been taken by Roosters utility Setaimata Sa.

Manu's injury reduces the Kiwis to 23 players in their squad, with no replacements permitted once the tournament is under way.

He's the fourth player from the original squad to be ruled out, along with fullback Brent Webb, prop Jeff Lima, and centre Iosia Soliola.

Frontliners Roy Asotasi and Frank Pritchard were both ruled out with injury before the squad were named.