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A broken left foot will keep Sidney Crosby off Team Canada. ((Jacques Boissinot/Canadian Press))

Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby can be excused for declining to lead Team Canada at the world hockey championship in Moscow. It turns out he played the past month with a broken foot.

Crosby, 19, revealed Saturday he fractured a bone in his left foot blocking a shot in a 6-3 win over the Montreal Canadiens on March 16.

Penguins teammate Jordan Staal will make the trip, joining his brother Eric, who plays for the Carolina Hurricanes.

Crosby played through the injury, posting five goals and 14 points in Pittsburgh's final 11 regular-season games to capture the NHL scoring title with 120 points.

"The first two weeks were pretty sore,"thenative of Cole Harbour, N.S., said. "After a couple of weeks, it started to heal, and it got a little better after that. It just needs time."

In the playoffs,the youngest scoring champion in league history led the Penguins with five points in a five-game loss to the Ottawa Senators in the opening round of the playoffs.

Crosby was looking forward to competing in the worlds after leading last year's tournament at Riga, Latvia, with 16 points in nine games.

"It would have been a huge thrill to play for Team Canada," he said.

Team Canada, now with 14 players,opens the worlds against Germany on April 28, with Steve Yzerman acting as general manager and Andy Murray of the St. Louis Blues as head coach.

With files from the Canadian Press