15 Apr 2011

Mortlock ruled out of Rebels clash with Highlanders

5:56 am on 15 April 2011

The Melbourne Rebels have suffered a blow ahead of Friday night's Super Rugby match against the Highlanders in Victoria with captain Stirling Mortlock ruled out of the fixture.

Mortlock suffered a hip strain at training this week and has been ruled out for the round nine clash at Melbourne's AAMI Park.

James Hilgendorf will come into the side as a straight swap for Mortlock at inside centre.

The Rebels coach Rod Macqueen admits it's not an ideal situation but is confident Hilgendorf can cover for Mortlock.