Beauden Barrett has been ruled out of the Blues’ opening Super Rugby Pacific match against Moana Pasifika as he continues his return from a concussion.
Barrett has been struggling after he took a heavy knock to the head in the All Blacks’ Test against Ireland in November last year.
Barrett, who is making his return to the Blues following a sabbatical stint in Japan, has started training with his teammates but it has been confirmed that he is not yet ready to play.
“It’s really tough with concussions to name a date because that puts pressure on the player and they feel like they’re letting people down if they don’t make that date,” MacDonald told the New Zealand Herald.
“He won’t be around the first round and what happens after that, fingers crossed we start seeing him around the team and potentially available. The first round is definitely a no-go for Beauden.
“He ran pretty well today and is getting into some high-intensity training. He’s feeling really good, his energy is good. Once he gets inside the Queenstown bubble and starts talking rugby it will be hard to pull him back.”