Stags and Highlanders flanker John Hardie will head into surgery in Dunedin today after it was confirmed he suffered a recurrence of his foot injury in the Stags pre-season match against Otago last month.
Hardie will miss the remainder of the Stags season and at this stage could be out for up to four months.
Meanwihle, Stags halfback Scott Cowan has joined his brother in heading to Europe to ply his trade.
Cowan who first played for the Stags in 2008 after a stint on the fringes for Otago is linking with Italian Club Viadana who have recently reformed to compete in Italy's top professional competition the National Championship of Excellence.
Viadana had two years away from the top flight and Cowan is sure to add valuable experience to their return.
Cowan's move has been in the pipeline for a period of time but visa and contract formalities had to be worked through before he clear to depart.
Cowan leaves behind his brother Jimmy – who will celebrate his 100th match for Southland on Sunday against Hawkes Bay.
However, their separation will not be for long because Jimmy will also be on his way to the Northern Hemisphere next month.
- © Fairfax NZ News