Force and Wallabies lock Adam Coleman is set to miss five weeks with a calf injury, as the WA franchise named their team to face the Brumbies.
Coleman came off early in the Force’s 26-19 win against the Reds after straining the muscle and coach Dave Wessels confirmed he would miss just over a month with the issue.
With two byes to come in that time, if all goes well, Coleman will be in line to return for the Force’s round nine match against the Chiefs in Perth.
The loss of their lineout caller is a massive blow for the Force but Wessels said it could have been much worse for Coleman, the Force and the Wallabies.
Depending on the severity, calf injuries can rule players out for four months or more.
“We got out of jail with big ‘Ads’,” he said.
“He's got a niggle with his calf but it looks like a five-week injury and given the bye, we feel like we got away with one there.
Ross Haylett-Petty will return to the second row after playing blindside against the Reds, combining with rookie Matt Philip.
Their pairing is one Wessels believes can continue the enforcer role that Coleman has taken up in recent times.
"When you get hit by Rossco, you stay hit, which is a good thing," he said.
"I think also there's more onus again on our backrow to get through the work they did against the Waratahs (in round one).
"Two of those backrowers got through over 30 contact in the game, which is a huge number and that's Matt Hodgson numbers so we need that same effort from them again."
Coleman has still played a major role in the lead-up to this game, Wessels said.
"He leads our lineout, so he doesn't necessarily need to be playing to do that," he said.
"Adam went off fairly early (last week) and Matt and Ross continued the game and did some really good work. They're both really good players and we've got full faith in them."
Hodgson is another player set to miss this weekend’s Canberra matchup, with the Force taking a cautious route with the flanker, Wessels confident he will return for their round five trip to Christchurch, while captain Ben McCalman is still recovering from his dislocated thumb.
In more positive news, playmaker Jono Lance will be back in the side for the Brumbies match, after fearing the worst when he came off with a rib injury against the Reds.
The Force have made a few switches for Friday night’s game, with front row duo Tetera Faulkner and Pek Cowan coming into the starting XV, with Ben Daley and Jermain Ainsley on the bench.
Former Brumbies back Robbie Coleman comes onto the bench, along with potential debutant Onehunga Havili, a second rower who also featured on the wing in the NRC team.
“'Hunga' actually played on the wing for us at some points,” he said.
“He's very big and he's very fast and we saw in the NRC, particularly at scrum time, how powerful he can be.”
The Force take on the Brumbies in Canberra on Friday night, kicking off at 7:45pm AEDT, LIVE on FOX SPORTS and via radio on RUGBY.com.au.
IN: Robbie Coleman, Onehunga Havili
OUT: Adam Coleman (calf), Alex Newsome
1. Pek Cowan
2. Heath Tessmann (C)
3. Tetera Faulkner
4. Ross Haylett-Petty
5. Matt Philip
6. Brynard Stander
7. Kane Koteka
8. Richard Hardwick
9. Ryan Louwrens
10. Jono Lance
11. Chance Peni
12. Bill Meakes
13. Curtis Rona
14. Luke Morahan
15. Dane Haylett-Petty (VC)
16. Tatafu Polota-Nau
17. Ben Daley
18. Jermaine Ainsley
19. Onehunga Havili
20. Isireli Naisarani
21. Michael Ruru
22. Ian Prior
23. Robbie Coleman