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Digby Ioane could miss first Lions Test

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Sportal.co.nz     23 May 2013     Getty Images

Ioane, 27, had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in Brisbane after returning from the Queensland Reds' two-match Super Rugby tour of South Africa.

After the operation, the Wallabies posted on Twitter that Ioane would be 'touch and go' for the opening Test against the Lions in Brisbane on June 22.

The minor procedure usually sidelines players for three to four weeks, and a month on the sidelines would rule Ioane out of the first Test.

"Just letting you guys know. The surgery went really well, should be back for the test, bring on the #lions god bless my Twitter friends," Ioane tweeted.

The 34-Test veteran suffered the injury during Queensland's 27-13 loss to the Cheetahs on Saturday but was only expected to miss one Super Rugby match.

Ioane would almost have been a certain starter for the first Test after being named in coach Robbie Deans' preliminary 25-man squad on Sunday.

If he misses the Lions clash, Israel Folau, who has been playing at full-back for the New South Wales Waratahs, could start on the wing.

The athletic Folau played on the wing during his rugby league career with the Melbourne Storm and Brisbane Broncos.

Ioane's injury is just the latest of what is becoming a long list of casualties for the Wallabies.

David Pocock (knee) and Tatafu Polota-Nau (arm) have been ruled out of the series, while George Smith (knee) and Pat McCabe (knee) are both in doubt.