Monday 25 September 2017

Ronaldson injury blow for Connacht

Craig Ronaldson, Connacht, holds his leg after he was injured during the game against Toulouse
Craig Ronaldson, Connacht, holds his leg after he was injured during the game against Toulouse

Declan Rooney

Connacht have been hit with a blow ahead of this weekend's Pro12 clash with Dragons after fly-half Craig Ronaldson was ruled out for four weeks with a hamstring injury.

Ronaldson picked up the injury a minute after his introduction for Dan Parks against Toulouse on Saturday and will now miss all of the province's festive campaign against Dragons, Munster and Leinster.

The former Lansdowne No 10 is also now a doubt for Connacht's next Heineken Cup clash with Zebre in January, but coach Pat Lam is hopeful that he'll be back and that skipper Craig Clarke will be fit for the weekend after picking up a dead leg.

"Craig Ronaldson is now gone for four weeks, but someone else has to step in," said Lam. "He pulled it pretty bad, we expect he'll be out for about four weeks. Craig Clarke took a haematoma to his leg, but having the extra day off today will certainly help him. We are confident he will be right.

"We have to move into the Rabo season again now and we want to get off the bottom of the table. But we cannot focus on that, we have to get our game and our heart right. If they are okay, hopefully results will follow."

Meanwhile, Connacht have secured the services of New Zealand-born prop Rodney Ah You until 2016 after he agreed a new deal with the IRFU yesterday. The former New Zealand U-20 international has been with the Westerners since 2010 and will be Irish qualified next September.

"When I arrived here at the end of last season, we gave Rodney a one-year extension to prove to us that he has the ability to fulfil his obvious potential," Lam said. "With his performances this season and the progress and development he has made physically and mentally, his determination to succeed is more than evident.

"We are now delighted that he has signed a new contract which will secure him to Connacht for two more seasons. As a young prop who can play loosehead or tighthead, Rodney will be a huge asset for Connacht Rugby."

Irish Independent

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