Rynier Bernardo will undergo surgery later this week and has been ruled out of the remainder of the season.
The South African second row limped out of the opening minutes of the LV= Cup defeat to Gloucester at the end of January, and after scans confirmed a dislocated kneecap, he will go under the knife to reconstruct damaged ligaments.
Medical Performance Manager, Chris Towers, confirmed the news, saying:
“We have discussed his treatment with the specialist and, essentially, the surgery means that he will miss the rest of the season. Post op, we will be in a better position to confirm the likely extent of his lay-off, once we have seen the full extent of his injury.”
Bernardo is the third senior lock to be ruled out through long-term injury, joining Lloyd Peers and De Kock Steenkamp on the sidelines, while Alun Wyn Jones is also unavailable on international duty.