Toulon lock Bakkies Botha will be sidelined for up to two months as the Springbok international undergoes surgery on a fractured eye socket.
Botha suffered the injury during his team’s 62-0 rout over English club Sale in European Cup action on Sunday.
The 33-year-old, capped 76 times for South Africa, only recently extended his contract with the Top 14 leaders until 2015 but came off just before half-time on Sunday and will have an operation later in the week.
He has started 10 of 12 domestic matches this season for the French giants and played in all four of their European Cup victories that sees them clear leaders of Pool Six, which also includes Montpellier and Cardiff.
There was some good news for Toulon, who have never won a European competition and are seeking their first French championship since 1992, as France international Frederic Michalak and scrumhalf Sebastien Tillous-Borde only picked up minor knocks and should be fit to face Agen in league action on Saturday.