New Wales coach Wayne Pivac will have to be without the services of Tomas Francis for the upcoming Six Nations after the tighthead prop was confirmed to be ruled out of action for up to four months.
The 27-year-old damaged his shoulder during the World Cup semi-final defeat to South Africa in Yokohama.
Exeter Chiefs Director of rugby, Rob Baxter said: "After two or three scans it became clear that Tom needs an operation to repair the shoulder injury he picked up with Wales at the World Cup.
“It’s not great news for us, but at least we know where we stand now.”
This means the 27-year-old Francis will be out until late March, effectively ruling him out of any involvement in the Six Nations.
To cover up the injury, Exeter Chiefs have now signed Argentinian prop Enrique Pieretto.
Rob Baxter has moved swiftly to capture Argentinian prop Enrique Pieretto following injuries to fellow tight-heads Tomas Francis and Greg Holmes.https://t.co/LQcx4cBcR9— Ultimate Rugby (@ultimaterugby) November 19, 2019