Tuesday 12 December 2017

'Apologies to fans who heard my expletives' - Luke Fitzgerald on suffering knee injury

Ireland's Luke Fitzgerald during the open training session where he suffered his knee injury
Ireland's Luke Fitzgerald during the open training session where he suffered his knee injury

Luke Fitzgerald will miss the RBS 6 Nations after suffering a "fairly innocuous but very unfortunate" knee ligament injury.

The Leinster three-quarter suffered his injury blow during Ireland's open training session at the Aviva Stadium on Friday, and could be out of action for two months.

The 28-year-old impressed off the bench in Ireland's 43-20 World Cup quarter-final defeat to Argentina, and would have now been hoping to force his way into boss Joe Schmidt's starting line-up.

Now though the 34-cap flyer will be unable to help Ireland in their quest to retain the Six Nations trophy for an unprecedented third year in succession.

Speaking on Off The Ball on Newstalk, Fitzgerald apologised to any supporters who heard him vent his frustration when the injury struck.

"I just got caught awkwardly... I was very annoyed at the time and apologies to any of the supporters who heard any of the expletives from me," he said.

"I heard the pop and I said 'I can't believe it's in a drill like this'.

"For me, I don't really feel like I'm that unlucky, I'm lucky it wasn't a season-ending injury.

"It'll be tough watching but I wasn't guaranteed to be playing anyway . It probably looked from the way things were shaping up that I would have been on the bench. Just my gut feeling."

Fitzgerald is hoping that he can recover from the knock quickly to feature in Leinster's Pro12 run-in and the tour of South Africa with Ireland.

"I had a bit of time to get my head around it. In the grand scheme of things, the timing is unlucky.... it's 6-8 weeks so I kinda got the good news on Friday that it wasn't going to end my season which I was pretty concerned about given the nature of the injury," he added.

"It's very disappointing given that it's a crucial part of the season and I'm coming in on the back of playing pretty well for Ireland in my last two games.

"The last two competitive ones against Scotland last year and Argentina.

"I've had a bit of experience in my career of getting setbacks and I was pretty focused then on getting some positives from the situation.

"I've been on a pretty good run injury-wise for a while now and its kind of become commonplace to get an injury of this kind of length at some stage of a year and I hope this is my one and I've a clean bill for the rest.

"There's a good part of the season to go with Leinster and I think we are in a good place in terms of the league and hopefully we're able to finish in that top four,

"If you play well for Leinster you would hope to be in the reckoning for that tour of South Africa."

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