Blow for Ireland as Sean O'Brien one of three players ruled out of Six Nations
Ireland have been dealt another serious injury blow with the news that Sean O’Brien and Dave Kearney will miss the remainder of the Six Nations with respective hamstring and shoulder injuries.
O’Brien was forced off early in last weekend’s defeat to France and he will play no further part in the tournament.
Kearney who suffered a shoulder injury in the same game has also been ruled out of Ireland’s remaining three games.
“Sean is likely to miss the rest of the Six Nations as is Dave Kearney but we’ll continue to monitor them,” Joe Schmidt said.
Mike McCarthy’s season looks almost certain to be over after he saw a specialist this week in relation to the concussion that he sustained in Paris.
The second-row was stretchered off in a neck brace in a sickening clash of heads with Jack McGrath and Schmidt revealed that he is facing a spell out to “freshen up.”
“(McCarthy) has seen a specialist now and he is going to effectively recondition himself, freshen himself up and to kick-start next season now,” Schmidt explained.
“That’s the latest word, maybe not the definitive word, but I think for him it’s an opportunity to freshen himself up a bit and that will give him a good entry point to next season.”
Meanwhile, Johnny Sexton limped out of Ireland’s open training session in Mullingar this morning after he rolled his ankle but Schmidt insisted that it wasn’t serious enough to put him in doubt for the England game next week.
“He just rolled his ankle,” Schmidt said. “He could have trained on, but we sent him to the side.
“He rolled it, then did all the individual stuff in the unit split, but in the end most of what we were going to do is broken play work, so we didn’t really need him in there and we had 18 players from the 20s.
“Johnny will be fit to play on Monday. The problem with rolling your ankle is if you do train on it you just get more inflammation. The sooner you stop the inflammation, in 48 hours you’re up and running.
“I wouldn’t be concerned at all. The medics came and said to me ‘do you want him to carry on?’ I said ‘no, leave him out.’"