Talented back Cory Jane has admitted he is still a doubtful starter for Saturday's Super Rugby clash with the Crusaders in Christchurch.
The 29-year-old picked up a high ankle sprain against the Brumbies in May forcing him to miss out on the All Blacks series against Ireland, but Jane had targeted the Crusaders match for his comeback.
Jane's recovery is taking longer than expected and he is unwilling to risk further injury by rushing back into action too soon.
"Last week I was on the treadmill running but I was in the moon boot a bit too long, or longer than I wanted to be in there," Jane told Sportal.
"But slowly I'm getting back to running and we'll use this week and try and get it right for the weekend.
"If it's not going to be 100 percent then I won't be playing because I still want to play some rugby this year.
"Everyone plays with a little bit of pain but I don't want to go out there and have it too sore, fall over, and have something real bad happen to it."
Following this weekend's clash with the Crusaders the Hurricanes have a bye before tackling the Chiefs at home for their final match of the regular season. Should Jane miss out this weekend and the 'Canes not reach the playoffs, he will have only the Chiefs game to impress All Blacks boss Steve Hansen ahead of the Rugby Championship.
Hansen already has a number of selection headaches following the superb form of so many players against Ireland, and Jane faces stiff competition from Israel Dagg, Julian Savea, Zac Guildford, Ben Smith and Hosea Gear for a berth on the wing or at fullback.
"It's been frustrating, watching rugby and not being there... in that environment," Jane said.
"I had that (competition for places) last year when I missed out on the Tri-Nations. I was injury cover and I figured then 'those guys are in front of me but they've got to work hard because I'm coming for them'. It's the same thing now.
"They are in the team now and I'm not but I want to get back there. I've got to get my ankle 100 percent and work at trying to get back into that team. I want to be there."