16 Mar 2013

Barnes injured again in Waratahs loss to Cheetahs

10:02 am on 16 March 2013

TheWallabies playmaker Berrick Barnes has suffered another injury setback after dislocating his thumb in the Waratahs' 27-26 Super Rugby loss to the Cheetahs in Sydney.

Barnes walked from the field in the 17th minute of his comeback game clutching his right hand after Cheetahs winger Raymond Rhule scored in the corner.

It's another devastating setback for the 50-Test capped Wallaby, who had only just returned from the sidelines after injuring his knee in the Waratahs' first trial game of the season in January.

Waratahs coach Michael Cheika says the thumb popped back in and Barnes will have to be reassessed to determine the extent of the damage.

There were big hopes Barnes would be the man to steer the Waratahs back on track for their 2013 Super Rugby campaign after early losses to the Brumbies and Reds.

With the Wallabies five-eighth and inside centre spots still up for grabs for the British and Irish Lions Tour in June, the injury will also limit Barnes' chances to impress coach Robbie Deans.