James was superb in last season's Champions Cup semi-final win over Saracens. Billy Stickland/INPHO

Heart procedure means Clermont out-half Brock James to miss start of season

The Australian playmaker will be sidelined for around two months.

CLERMONT OUT-HALF Brock James will miss the start of the Top 14 season after suffering a minor heart anomaly that requires a surgical procedure.

The French club stated that the Australian’s heart issue is “without gravity” but that a “minor” medical procedure is necessary to ensure James returns to full health.

The 33-year-old, who helped Clermont into the finals of the Champions Cup and Top 14 last season but did not start in either decider, will undergo the operation in the coming days.

Clermont anticipate that James will be able to start training again within days of the procedure, although without contact. Their expectation is that the playmaker will miss two months of action.

The 2010 Top 14 winners open the 2015/16 league season with a visit to La Rochelle on 22 August, before hosting Grenoble a week later and then travelling to Oyonnax on 5 September.

Clermont’s Camille Lopez was left out of France’s initial World Cup training squad, while the highly promising Argentinian out-half Patricio Fernández offers the club an element of depth after the departure of Mike Delany to Newcastle Falcons this summer.

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