All Blacks loose forward Liam Squire’s comeback from injury has been delayed for another few weeks as he deals with “personal issues” that have ruled him out of the Highlanders’ Super Rugby trip to South Africa.
Squire was selected for the Highlanders’ home match against the Jaguares last Saturday but was withdrawn from the match‑day line‑up.
Squire who has been battling hip and knee problems, has not played a competitive game since Ireland faced the All Blacks in November last year.
Fellow All Black Jackson Hemopo, has also been ruled out from the tour due to a knee injury he suffered last week.
Fijian-born winger Waisake Naholo who has been suffering from a knee injury since last month has been cleared to be part of the tour.
The Highlanders will take on the Lions at Ellis Park Stadium at 1.05am Sunday.
The Hurricanes take on the Jaguares at 7.35pm on Friday while the Rebels will face the Bulls at 9.45pm on Friday night.
The Blues will play the Chiefs at 7.35pm Saturday, the Reds will face the Waratahs at 9.45pm Saturday while the Stormers will host the Crusaders at 3.15am Sunday.