14 Jun 2011

Barnes hopeful of World Cup berth

6:52 pm on 14 June 2011

The Australian utility back Berrick Barnes is hoping to be named in the Wallabies World Cup squad next month despite withdrawing from the remainder of the Super Rugby season to deal with head knock-related issues.

The New South Wales Waratahs' playmaker's decided to take a break on medical advice after last weekend's home win over the Highlanders when he was forced from the field in the first half and later suffered a severe headache.

Barnes says he wants to try to deal with it now before becomes too much of a problem and he's been assured it's nothing that's going to affect him long term .

The 25-year-old has ruled out retirement and hopes to make his return at club level for Sydney University in time to push for selection in the Wallabies World Cup squad, which is announced on July 10.

The long-term effects of head injuries are a growing concern in all contact sports and the IRB issued new guidelines on the treatment of concussion last month.

And in Australia former AFL player Daniel Bell lodged a claim for compensation after being diagnosed with brain damage linked to concussions he sustained while playing Australian rules..