Western Force have been hit by injury ahead of their round-two Super Rugby clash with Southern Kings in Port Elizabeth tomorrow.

Utility back Patrick Dellit has flown back to Perth with multiple facial fractures and an ankle injury sustained against Melbourne Rebels last Friday.

He travelled to South Africa as the Force left Melbourne just hours after the 23-30 loss to the Rebels and medical staff were unable to do a full examination.

It is hoped he will be fit for round five against the Reds in Brisbane next month.

Ed Stubbs, 24, a member of the Australian sevens side for the past three years, has flown to South Africa as a replacement.

Stubbs signed from the Brumbies this year. He made his debut for them in 2010, coming from their academy squad, but did not play in 2011.

He spent 2012 touring with the Australian sevens.

Dellit, 26, had been moved from his usual positions at either outside centre or full-back to right wing under new coach Michael Foley, who said the injury was disappointing.

"Paddy's form throughout the trials and against the Rebels has been very good," Foley said. "He has led both on and off the field with his standards and effort.

"It is important we get him back to Perth and begin his rehabilitation, with the Reds game in mind."

The Force play the Bulls in Pretoria tomorrow week.

Dellit had been hoping to put a frustrating 2012 behind him and reclaim a regular spot in the starting line-up after managing only three starts in the No.13 jumper and two appearances from the bench because of a groin injury.

He was the club's 2011 rising star award winner and is in his last year of his contract.

Leading into this season, he said he had got over the injuries with a tailored pre-season regime that had lightened his workload.

Competition for the Force back three has been strong with a number of players, including Will Tupou, Alfie Mafi and Nick Cummins, all pushing for spots.


  • FIXTURES *

_TODAY _

Highlanders v Chiefs, Rebels v Brumbies, Bulls v Stormers

_TOMORROW _

Hurricanes v Blues, Reds v Waratahs, Cheetahs v Sharks, Kings v Force

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