Friday 24 February 2017

Fogarty forced to bow out

LEINSTER are in the market for a new hooker after John Fogarty has announced his immediate retirement from rugby as a result of difficulties brought about by repeated concussions, WRITES HUGH FARRELLY.

Joe Schmidt's side have South African Richardt Strauss and Jason Harris-Wright on their books, but with a heavy schedule of Magners League and Heineken Cup matches, they will need a third option.

The 33-year-old Fogarty won his sole cap for Ireland as a late replacement against the All Blacks during last summer's tour. He was also a member of Leinster's Heineken Cup-winning squad, having previously won a Celtic League with Munster. He also holds 12 Ireland 'A' caps, three as captain.

Leinster also announced the retirement of 33-year-old prop Ronnie McCormack due to neck injury problems. McCormack played 52 times for Leinster and won nine caps for Ireland 'A'.

Meanwhile, New Zealand's Keven Mealamu could be missing for the All Blacks' visit to Dublin on Saturday week after the hooker was cited for an apparent headbutt on Lewis Moody in the 26-16 victory over England at Twickenham.

Mealamu faces the minimum of a one-month ban if he is found guilty. The IRB-appointed judicial officer, Professor Lorne Crerar, will hear the case at a date and venue to be confirmed.

Irish Independent

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