Saints boss Jim Mallinder has revealed that Kieran Brookes has had knee surgery and will be out for ‘quite a few weeks’.
Brookes suffered the injury to his knee cartilage in last week’s 9-9 draw with Racing 92 at Franklin’s Gardens, coming off after just 29 minutes.
And November’s player of the month will now be sidelined for an extended spell after being forced to have the operation.
“Kieran Brookes has an operation on his knee a couple of days ago and he’s going to be out for quite a few weeks,” Mallinder confirmed after the Boxing Day defeat at London Irish.
It is bad news for both Saints and England, with Brookes staking his claim to be first-choice tighthead in the Six Nations.
And Mallinder added: “It’s a big blow.
“He was someone who was playing really well and our scrum was going really well, so it’s a blow.
“But that’s when the other lads have got to come in and step up.”