Chiefs lose props Nepo Laulala and Atunaisa Moli to long-term injuries

Lualala leaves the field during the clash with the Blues.
Lualala leaves the field during the clash with the Blues. Photo credit: Getty

The Chiefs will be without two critical pieces of their tight-five puzzle for the foreseeable future.

All Blacks prop Nepo Laulala will miss the next eight to twelve weeks of Super Rugby action as he recovers from surgery on his fractured forearm.

The news isn't as good for fellow front-rower Atunaisa Moli, who's been forced under the knife by a quad hematoma and won’t play any further part in the Chiefs' 2018 campaign.

Laulala left the field late in his side's win over the Blues in Auckland on Friday, immediately raising concern as he nursed his arm in a sling.

The news is the latest in a string of health-related blows for the Hamilton-based franchise after last week losing Tim Nanai-Williams for the season with a shoulder injury.

Winger Shaun Stevenson will be reassessed this week after being scratched during warm-ups prior to the Blues match.

In more encouraging news, lock Brodie Retallick has recovered from his eye poke and is available for selection against the Bulls in round five.

Charlie Ngatai, Dominic Bird and Kane Hames have also been nursing niggles, with the expectation that the bye week should provide an ample amount of recovery time for their clash with the South Africans.