THE season appears to be going from bad to worse for the struggling Melbourne Rebels after half-back Richard Kingi was ruled out for up to eight weeks with a knee injury.
Kingi will have surgery on a lateral collateral ligament complex in his right knee sustained in his side's 30-27 loss against competition newcomers, the Southern Kings, in Melbourne on Saturday.
He injured it trying to prevent the South Africans scoring their first try on a historic night for the men from Port Elizabeth who recorded their first win on Australasian soil.
The defeat was the sixth of the year for the second-last placed Rebels.
It also means they are still winless in 11 games against teams from the Republic.
Rebels' coach Damien Hill said he was disappointed with the news, but knows Kingi, a foundation member, will do his best to get back onto the park.
"One of Richard's greatest strengths is his resilience," Hill said.
"At this stage we are unsure on his return, but knowing Richard he will do everything he can to put himself in the best position to return this Super Rugby season."
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