Sport Rugby

Saturday 18 January 2020

Sexton gets green light for Pumas showdown

Conor George

JONATHAN SEXTON will be fit for Ireland's must-win game against Argentina, according to team manager Mick Kearney.

Sexton underwent a scan over the weekend after pulling up with a tight groin in the warm-up against Fiji but this was, Kearney insisted, no more than a precaution. The out-half received the all-clear and has since been back jogging.

"At a stretch, Jonathan could have stayed in the squad on Saturday but it was felt it wasn't prudent and we withdrew him solely as a precaution," said Kearney.

"It's not even a minor concern to be honest. He received treatment over the weekend and even today there was considerable easing.

"The scan was nothing more than a precaution and it was determined there was no damage. Jonathan was back jogging today and will train fully on Thursday and will be absolutely fine for Saturday."

Kearney also reported nothing more than a few knocks and bruises among the majority of the squad, with just John Muldoon definitely ruled out of the crucial Test match after suffering a medial ligament tear.

The Connacht flanker is facing a 12-week lay-off but will not have to undergo surgery. His place in the squad is taken by Leinster's Rhys Ruddock.

"There are no serious concerns for Saturday," Kearney added. "Tommy Bowe suffered a dead leg against South Africa and didn't train last week but he was back running today and will take a full part in training tomorrow.

"Similarly Eoin Reddan jarred an ankle but he trained today and will be fine too."

Meanwhile, Argentina might have to plan without their prop forward Juan Figallo as he has been cited by Mike Rafter of England for striking with the head (Law 10.4 (a)) on French captain Pascal Pape at the end of the match in Lille on Saturday.

His hearing will take place tomorrow before independent IRB-appointed judicial officers.

Irish Independent

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