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Minor surgery for Dan Carter

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James Mortimer     16 Dec 2013     Getty Images

The latter injury caused Carter to leave the field against England in his 100th Test match, which ensured that he missed the final match of the Air New Zealand European Tour against Ireland.

However while his leg would not endure the rigours of Test combat in the All Blacks final tour match, Carter was still able to walk relatively freely.

The 31-year-old first five-eighths is now back in New Zealand after wrapping up sponsorship and promotional duties in the United States, and All Blacks doctor Tony Page confirmed to the Press that Carter would have surgery.

It is not however for his Achilles tendon, but rather to clear up his ankle from some bone spurs.

"Dan's Achilles tendon has developed some wear and tear but it won't require surgery which is good news," Page said.

"However, separately from that, Dan has some bone spurs in the same ankle which need to be removed so he will have an operation for that. This is similar to what he had done a few years ago."

Carter will return to rugby in late July, and will feature in the back end of the Crusaders 2014 Investec Super Rugby season.

All Blacks captain Richie McCaw said that despite limited appearances this year, Carter was still the goods and would be better for six months away from the game.

“It was only for 20 minutes in that last game (but), he showed how influential he still is, and if he can get his body right and get back playing regular rugby, there's no doubt he's still classy,” he said.

“He's lucky to have that time now, because if he had to go through another year without the chance to get over these things, it would be a pretty hard road. Hopefully, it's come at the right time."

What is a bone spur?

A bone spur (osteophyte) is a bony growth formed on normal bone, and is a common injury for rugby players.

Most people think of something sharp when they think of a "spur," but a bone spur is just extra bone.

It is usually smooth, but it can cause wear and tear or pain if it presses or rubs on other bones or soft tissues such as ligaments, tendons, or nerves in the body. Common places for bone spurs include the spine, shoulders, hands, hips, knees, and feet.