England wing Marland Yarde could miss the whole of the Six Nations after it was announced Friday the London Irish flyer needs surgery on a torn hip tendon.
Yarde suffered the injury in last weekend's 20-11 Premiership defeat by Leicester and will now be out of action for between 12 and 14 weeks, the Exiles said.
Yarde missed England's November clashes against Argentina and New Zealand with other injury problems after featuring in the win over Australia and this latest setback means he is unlikely to feature in the Six Nations opener against France in Paris on February 1.
He joins an England injury list that includes back-row Tom Croft, centre Manu Tuilagi, prop Alex Corbisiero and lock Geoff Parling, all of whom are set for length spells on the sidelines.
But midfield defensive linchpin Brad Barritt, could be fit come the Six Nations after the Saracens centre missed the November campaign with an ankle injury.