Scotland lock Richie Gray will miss the November internationals and part of the Six Nations after he was ruled out for four months with a back injury.
It is a recurrence of an injury that Gray had surgery on last summer which has meant he has only played 60 minutes of rugby for his Top 14 side Toulouse this season.
Toulouse club boss Ugo Mola confirmed that the 29-year-old would miss “around four months” of action as he undergoes surgery for the same problem.
It is a massive blow for Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend ahead of the upcoming November internationals against Wales, Fiji, South Africa and Argentina.
Townsend names his squad on Wednesday and is already without full-back Stuart Hogg, tighthead prop Zander Fagerson as well as Glasgow lock duo Tim Swinson and Scott Cummings.
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