The Chiefs will kick-off their Super Rugby campaign without scrum-half Augustine Pulu after he broke his arm on Sunday.
The 26-year-old picked up the injury during the World Sevens Series semi-final clash between New Zealand and Fiji in Sydney.
Pulu was due to reunite with the Chiefs this week ahead of their opening Super Rugby trial match against the Waratahs, but is expected to be sidelined for eight to ten weeks.
"It's incredibly disappointing, for him. He's obviously been part of a Sevens campaign, gone really well, made a really big contribution, and was keen to get into some Super footy, and then obviously head back towards Rio," Chiefs coach Dave Rennie told Stuff.
Pulu joins prop Nepo Laulala (out for the season) and lock Dominic Bird (ten weeks) on the injury list, but cover is available at number nine with All Blacks Tawera Kerr-Barlow and Brad Weber providing depth at scrum-half. Samoan international Pele Cowley has also been training with the Waikato franchise to cover Pulu's Sevens commitments.
"It's part of footy unfortunately. It's tough for the players isn't it. I mean us old fellas can complain, but we don't have to go through all the rehab and so on. But we've got depth in our group, and it's an opportunity for someone else I guess. But I really feel for Augy," he added.
Pulu, who has two All Blacks caps, is expected to miss the Las Vegas and Vancouver legs of the Sevens tournament.