DEFENDING champion Eminoni Turagabeci is out of the Fiji Bowling Association national championship which starts in Suva this Saturday.
Eminoni, the son of famous Vatukoula bowler Caucau Turagabeci, has a fractured tibia and will not recover in time for the two-day tournament.
Vatukoula Bowling Club tournament co-ordinator Semesa Lewai said they had advised the parent body about the extent of the injury.
He said Eminoni was registered to represent the country in the World Champion of Champions event in New Zealand next month.
"We are monitoring his recovery," Lewai said.
Fiji Bowling Association secretary Abdul Kalim said the injury could not have come at a worse time.
"This is a big blow to Eminoni's chance of defending his first national championship title," Kalim said.
"More importantly it jeopardises his chance of representing the nation. Eminoni is following the footsteps of his father who is well known for beating some of the best players in the world during his prime.
"The World Champion of Champions rules do not allow replacements. So if Eminoni does not recover then Fiji will not be represented in the men's section for the first time."
Kalim represented Fiji in the 2012 edition in Cyprus.
Evergreen Litia Tikoisuva is the women's representative this year.