Shattered I can't be in SA with the boys
Australia could be without a number of their key players when the new Rugby Championship gets underway next month.
The Championship - which will see Argentina join the SANZAR powerhouses of South Africa, New Zealand and Australia in the new competition - gets underway when the Wallabies host the All Blacks in Sydney on August 18, with the Springboks and Pumas going head-to-head in Cape Town later that same day.
It was revealed on Wednesday that at least three frontline players - captain David Pocock, as well as utility backs Kurtley Beale and James O'Connor - could miss the start of the tournament.
Pocock and Beale have both been ruled out of the remainder of the Super Rugby seasons and are in a race against time to be cleared for the encounter with the Kiwis.
The Wallabies' star openside flank, Pocock, is struggling with a groin injury that will sideline him for several weeks.
Beale, who has played at fullback and flyhalf this season, sustained a rib injury in the Rebels' 17-32 loss to the Reds last week and will be out for up to six weeks.
The 23-year-old, one of Australia's most dangerous backs, missed three of his country's four matches in June, returning for the third test against Wales in Sydney.
He also still face a court hearing over an assault charge, following an altercation at a nightclub last month.
His absence for the two Tests against World Cup champions New Zealand would be a huge blow to Wallaby coach Robbie Deans.
There is already a question mark over another of Australia's best young backs, O'Connor, who will also miss the Rebels' last two matches in South Africa because of a hamstring injury.
"Shattered I can't be in SA with the boys," Beale said on the social network Twitter.
"Got to remain positive and get body right."
Although there was no word for the Force on how long Pocock would be sidelined, Deans would not be keen on going into the match against the All Blacks without him.
Pocock's work at the breakdown is key to Australia's ability to slow down opposition ball and he captained the Wallabies in the four June Tests in place of James Horwill, who has already been ruled out for the rest of the year by a hamstring injury.
The Zimbabwe-born loose forward might also have played his last match for the Force after seven years in Perth as he is out of contract at the end of the season and a target for the Brumbies.