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Coles still struggling with concussion

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 1/06/2017

Dane Coles. © Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images Dane Coles. All Blacks hooker Dane Coles' concussion symptoms are taking time to clear, and his hopes of making the three-Test series against the British and Irish Lions are fading rapidly.

Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd had earlier underlined his team's clash with the Chiefs on June 9 in Wellington as the target for the 49-Test All Blacks hooker's return.

Coles hasn't played since suffering a knee injury in the fourth round match against the Highlanders on March 18.

He didn't train for two weeks and, upon return to running, suffered the calf tear as well as reporting headaches.

Speaking from Perth ahead of the Hurricanes match against the Force on Saturday, Boyd admitted that Coles was now unlikely to be fit for the Chiefs game.

"I haven't had any discussion with anybody at home around where Dane is this week," Boyd said.

"I know he made some progress last week, but he'll be a doubtful starter for us against the Chiefs.

"I think it would be unlikely that he's going to get through enough before next week for him to come into contention for selection."

The All Blacks are scheduled to meet Samoa in Auckland on June 16, with the first Lions Test eight days later.

Boyd said said it was difficult for medical staff to give an accurate assessment on concussion recovery.

"The crystal ball question is when are they going to be available for selection, whether it's a knee, a shoulder, an ankle or a head.

"The medical people are pretty accurate with anything other than concussion when it's 'how long is a piece of string'?"

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