Wallabies and Brumbies centre Christian Lealiifano will have surgery next week on his ankle but his Super Rugby franchise have admitted that they don't know when he wil be able to play again.
Lealiifano has been ruled out of the opening round of the 2014 Super Rugby season in February and doctors want to wait and find the extent of the ankle damage before they determine how long he will be out of action.
The Wallaby centre had an reconstruction in 2012 and played through the pain for the majority of the season.
Ahead of the operation it is still unclear whether Lealiifano will need a plate inserted or if he needs major surgery and an extended rehabilitation period before he can re-join the Brumbies.
Newly appointed Brumbies Director of Rugby Laurie Fisher says that Lealiifano will miss their first round clash against the Reds at Canberra Stadium on February the 22nd and his recovery could extend into the season.
"Christian's booked in for surgery and ready to go. He'll have a week off and then come back to get that done," Fisher told The Canberra Times.
"It's impossible to say how long it will have him out for."
"But we don't expect him to be available for the first round, that's not in our expectations."
"Until they open his ankle up, they're not exactly sure what damage they'll be repairing."
Meanwhile the Brumbies board met on Wednesday this week to start the process of finding a replacement for outgoing chief executive Andrew Fagan. One of the early favourites Joe Roff has pulled out but the club have had plenty of expressions of interest.
The Brumbies board are expected to take their time with the decision and are said to be willing to wait until February to announce Fagan's successor.