Vaine Greig will find life as a spectator harder than normal at the national sevens championships in Rotorua this weekend.
The New Zealand sevens player would have been playing for Manawatu but she is unavailable because of a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.
A member of last year's national title-winning side, Greig injured her knee in a game of touch at the end of November and is waiting for surgery, hopefully at the end of the month.
So this weekend will be hard to watch when she goes with the team as a supporter as they look to defend their crown.
"I've always got itchy feet and it's going to be even worse this weekend," she said.
The 22-year-old was to see a surgeon today about booking an operation and hoped to have it done before the end of the month. Then it is six months from surgery until she can play again.
Greig has just got off crutches but once she has surgery, she will start rehabilitation towards playing again and said she would ease back into it through playing club rugby and possibly in the women's provincial competition.
"I'll be crossing the days off the calendar, that's for sure."
She said it has been hard to watch the rest of the team play.
"It is what it is. I'll wait until it's time - everything happens for a reason."
Greig, who debuted for New Zealand at the world series leg in Amsterdam in May, is unable to run but has been working at the gym on the bike or doing upper-body work.
She said the New Zealand coaching staff have kept an eye on her and she trains at the gym with Manawatu's other New Zealand players.
She said she helps out if she can and things were looking good for her at the moment.
After going through the provincial season last year with the Manawatu Cyclones, the injury came about in a relatively innocent manner.
"I was playing social touch for a club team I play for," Greig said.
"With two minutes to go I got pushed over and did my knee."
As for Manawatu's chances of winning back-to-back nationals titles this weekend, she gave them a good shot after winning the Bay of Plenty Sevens tournament last weekend.
"They're looking pretty sharp," she said.
"They took out the Mount [Maunganui] tournament last week. I was super impressed."
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