Barnes avoids surgery and eyes comeback - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Barnes avoids surgery and eyes comeback

02/11/2009 06:42:44 PM Comments (0)

Wallabies vice-captain Berrick Barnes has set his sights on making his NSW debut against former state Queensland in next season's Super 14 opener after avoiding surgery on his injured ankle.

Barnes received a major boost on Monday when it was revealed the high ankle sprain which has ruled him out of Australia's Grand Slam tour won't require an operation.

No firm timeline has been set on Barnes return to training after he sustained the injury in the lead up to last Saturday night's 32-19 loss to the All Blacks in Tokyo.

But Barnes, who made a shock decision to defect to the Waratahs, is now confident of lining up against the Reds at Suncorp Stadium on February 13 after it was feared he'd miss the start of the competition.

"There's no reason why I shouldn't be right for the start of the Super 14 season," the Test playmaker said in a statement.

"It is good news that I don't need surgery and it's a matter now of working hard on the rehab."

Barnes, who has played all his senior football in Brisbane after being signed out of school by rugby league's Brisbane Broncos, will return to the Queensland capital to start his rehab.

His debut for the Reds came in the 2006 season opener when former Reds winger Wendell Sailor played his first game for NSW in front of a venomous Suncorp Stadium crowd.

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