Johnny Sexton injury another headache for Ireland
The IRFU will issue a statement today with an update on Johnny Sexton’s well-being
Sexton failed his head injury assessment at the Ricoh Arena against Wasps
The fly-half was stood down for 12 weeks by French neurologist Dr Jean-François Cherman after suffering four concussions in 2014
All three Irish provinces were eliminated from the Champions Cup at the pool stages
Ireland begins their final Six Nations preparations with an injury cloud hovering over fly-half Johnny Sexton and the psychological setback of having no province in the European Cup quarter-finals for the first time since 1997-98 is also a major blow.
The Leinster talisman had talked-up the chances of Leo Cullen’s side ahead of their trip to the Ricoh Arena and for seven minutes the out-half’s prediction appeared to be true as they ripped into their Aviva Premiership rivals.
But when Sexton was forced off after just eight minutes with a concussion, it proved the commencement of a disastrous afternoon for the visitors which ended with a record Champions Cup defeat.
The 56-cap Sexton has a broad history of concussion problems, which will add to the concerns with the February 7th championship meeting with Wales just 15 days away.
He suffered four concussions in 2014, when he was on the books of Racing Metro, which meant he had to serve a 12-week stand-down period from matches.
If he were to be ruled out of the Dublin showdown with Wales, then his Leinster colleague Ian Madigan, who stood in for him at the Rugby World Cup, would be the favourite to start at Number 10 against Warren Gatland’s men in red.
Leinster coach Leo Cullen said: “Johnny just got a head knock so we didn’t want to risk him going back out there so he’s up and about in the dressing room being assessed so he’ll follow the usual return-to-play protocols.
“Those guys are in (Ireland) camp next week, but he looked okay in the dressing room there.”
Irish tighthead prop Marty Moore also suffered a suspected hamstring strain.
“Marty looks like he’s done something to his hamstring,” added Cullen.
“Until we get a scan, it’s hard to know at this stage but it looks like it’s some sort of hamstring strain/tear.”