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Stephen Ferris injury blow for Ireland
ESPN Staff
November 5, 2012
Ireland flanker Stephen Ferris, Ireland v France, Six Nations, Stade de France, Paris, France, March 4, 2012
Stephen Ferris will have to wait to know if he will be fit for Ireland's autumn internationals © Getty Images
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Ireland have been dealt a huge blow on the eve of their end of year campaign with the news that Stephen Ferris will miss their clashes with South Africa and Fiji.

The Ulster flanker was limped out of Ulster's 45-20 win over Edinburgh at Ravenhill on Friday night with an ankle injury with initial reports suggesting he had suffered a bad sprain.

However, following further assessment by the Ireland medical team the 27-year-old has been ruled out of their opener against South Africa on Saturday and the match against Fiji in Limerick on November 17. Irish medics hope he may be fit for their date with Argentina in Dublin on November 24.

The news is just the latest blow to coach Declan Kidney's plans having already been robbed of the services of hooker Rory Best, fullback Rob Kearney and centre Brian O'Driscoll to injury. Fly-half Ronan O'Gara, lock Paul O'Connell, prop Cian Healey and utility back Keith Earls are also injury concerns.

The Ireland team to team to tackle the Springboks will be named on Thursday.

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