Chloe Dalton has announced she will not feature at the Olympics after suffering a cheek fracture.
Dalton suffered the injury during the Oceania Sevens Tournament last week in Townsville, the final warm-up event before the Olympics.
The 27-year-old was looking to compete in her second Olympics after featuring in Australia's historic gold medal-winning side in 2016.
However, her dreams have been shattered as she took to social media to confirm the injury.
"Sitting here writing this with tears rolling down my cheeks wishing I was writing a completely different message," she said via Instagram.
"During our tournament last weekend in Townsville, I fractured my cheekbone in multiple places. After spending the week isolated in a hospital room in Townsville, I'll head into surgery this afternoon to have plates put in my face. Unfortunately, there won't be enough time to recover safely in time for Tokyo.
"Writing these words down in absolutely devastating and makes it all feel so much more real. This past 18 months have been some of the most challenging in my life, and I've overcome so many mental and physical battles to get to this point. Sport can be so beautiful and so cruel at the same time.
"Come the end of the month, I'll be cheering my lungs out for my incredible teammates going over to Tokyo to represent our beautiful country. I couldn't be more proud of the work that this group has put in every single day throughout some incredibly uncertain times. These girls are the elite of the elite, and it has been such a huge honour to be back playing alongside them."
Dalton made her debut for Australia in 2014 at the Dubai Women's Sevens.
She had made the return to rugby union after a stint at Carlton, with hopes to repeat their efforts from 2016.
In June, Dalton confirmed she will return to the AFLW as part of the GWS Giants at the end of the year.
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