Cruel blow for Collingwood star Browne
COLLINGWOOD'S Super Netball campaign has been dealt a massive blow with co-captain Madi Browne ruled out for the season after surgery to repair her anterior cruciate ligament.
In a hit to the team's star-studded midcourt and title ambitions, the champion wing attack had surgery Thursday for the second time on her right knee after previously rupturing her ACL in 2015.
Browne hurt her knee in a pre-season match in Bendigo last month and the injury had not improved despite intensive rehabilitation.
Magpies coach Rob Wright said the news was a cruel blow for 31-year-old Browne, who was appointed co-captain alongside defender Geva Mentor this year, after a standout pre-season.
"We're really disappointed for Madi that she'll spend an extended period of time out of the game,'' Wright said.
"She has had such an impressive pre-season and had been outstanding on court. She is also a fantastic leader of our team.
"This is a case of life being unfair. Although she'll be out of action on court, there is a lot of opportunities for Madi to continue to be involved with the team behind the scenes."
Magpies training partner Kelsie Rainbow will continue to act as Browne's temporary replacement.
Entering her third season with the Magpies, Browne had been excited at the prospect of lining up in the Magpies' midcourt alongside her younger sister Kelsey, who joined the team this year after two seasons and titles with the Sunshine Coast Lightning.
The two-time Liz Ellis Diamond winner last year called time on her international career after 61 Tests with the Diamonds to focus on her Super Netball campaign with the Magpies.
Browne signed a one-year deal at the end of 2018 to continue playing with the Magpies.
The champion midcourter posted a picture on Instagram on Thursday afternoon hugging her sister in her hospital bed with the caption "Team Browne stronger than ever".