Bath fly-half George Ford will miss England's tour of New Zealand to undergo shoulder surgery, it was confirmed on Friday.
Bath coach Mike Ford confirmed what had long been suspected ahead of sending out his son to play in the all-English European Challenge Cup final against Northampton at Cardiff Arms Park.
England back-up fly-half Ford was in line to start the first Test against the world champion All Blacks on June 7, with first-choice Owen Farrell unavailable because of Saracens' Premiership final against Northampton on May 31.
Now the hope is Ford will be fully fit for 2015 World Cup hosts England's bid to win the Webb Ellis Cup next season.
"We took advice from the medics at both Bath and England," Mike Ford told Sky Sports News.
"It was decided that while he can get through this last game, he'll need an operation to start next season well.
"It's a big season with the World Cup coming, so it's the right decision for George.
"He was down for a couple of days but realised it's the best thing for him," the former England defence coach added.
"The last thing he needs is for his shoulder to go early next season.
"It's right for him to have the operation straight after the final and get strong for next season."