Wallabies and Waratahs teammate Nick Phipps hopes Wasps honour Kurtley Beale’s lucrative new deal with the injured playmaker ruled out for four to six months on Sunday.
While the Waratahs reported a “better prognosis than expected” after scans revealed Beale had torn his patella tendon but suffered no other damage to his knee, English club Wasps may not receive the news so well.
The big-spending club on Saturday confirmed it had signed Beale to a one-year deal with the option for a 12-month extension if his initial spell in Coventry proves a success.
His annual salary is reported to be worth in excess of STG700,000 ($A1.38 million), making the 27-year-old the highest-earning player in English Premiership history, eclipsing the STG500,000 ($A990,000) paid by Bath last season to rugby league convert Sam Burgess.
The injury means Beale will miss the rest of the Waratahs’ Super Rugby season, the three-Test home series against England in June and probably the entire Rugby Championship.
The English season starts in October, meaning Beale would miss the first month – at least – should he be sidelined for six months – and would likely take time to rediscover the sparkling form he has shown this season.
Scans revealed Beale’s patella tendon had torn from his patella.
“The result is the best possible prognosis given the tendon remains intact, requiring less invasive surgery, and that the injury is isolated with no other damage to the knee,” said the Waratahs.
Beale’s length of time away from the game will be better understood after he undergoes surgery on Monday, but Phipps hopes Beale’s life-changing deal isn’t under any cloud.
“I’d imagine he’s signed a contract and everything. Hopefully it doesn’t get messy, you know,” said Phipps after Beale suffered the injury in the opening minute of the Waratahs’ 31-8 win over the Bulls at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night.
“If they were going to miss anyone for maybe the rest of the year, then that’s a small price to pay to have a player of his quality at their club.”
Beale, who remains eligible for Wallabies selection after reaching the 60-cap criteria in last year’s Rugby World Cup final, could conceivably be back at the Waratahs for the start of the 2017 Super Rugby season if things don’t work with Wasps, for one reason or another.
“Who knows. I wonder what’s going to happen. He’s still young,” Phipps said.
“I’d love to play with him again. I’d love to have another opportunity.”