Thursday 24 May 2018

Luke McGrath fails to recover from ankle injury for Scarlets semi and it's also bad news for James Lowe

Leinster's James Lowe. Photo: Sportsfile
Leinster's James Lowe. Photo: Sportsfile

Des Berry

Luke McGrath has not been able to overcome an ankle injury to leave Leinster looking vulnerable at home to The Scarlets in the Champions Cup semi-final on Saturday, writes Des Berry in The Herald.

The fitness of the Ireland scrum-half was, quite simply, the most important piece in the Leinster puzzle.

McGrath’s unavailability means Jamison Gibson-Park will start at half-back with Nick McCarthy as his back-up.

However, it is the unreasonable ‘non-European’ rule that limits Leinster from using all three of their antipodean signings that hurts the most.

James Lowe, Leinster’s X-Factor, will lose out in the reshuffle as club captain Isa Nacewa is most likely to move to the wing.

It is understood Robbie Henshaw came through training on Tuesday without any issues and could return to the centre unless there is a delayed adverse reaction to his shoulder.

The blow of losing McGrath comes on top of Sean O’Brien’s failure to recover from a shoulder problem.

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