Ireland sweat on injured Sexton
November 18, 2013
If Jonathan Sexton is not available then Ireland have some serious headaches © PA Photos
Injury doubt Jonathan Sexton must train at least twice this week to be considered to face New Zealand on Sunday. Sexton limped out of Ireland's lacklustre 32-15 defeat to Australia at half-time with a hamstring problem.
Ireland boss Joe Schmidt will receive an update on Sexton's condition on Monday once Ireland's medics have examined scans. If the prognosis is unclear, he said Ireland can ill afford to gamble on Sexton being available.
"I guess we'll find out the degree of his injury and then that will either make a decision easy for us, because it looks good or it doesn't look good. If it's halfway in between, then certainly my expectation would be that he would have to train on Friday.
"He hasn't really spent that much time with us training, he had a little hip-flexor issue plus we left him to rest against Samoa just because of the attritional game time he had already accumulated. And I think the wear and tear of that game time has consequences, and unfortunately those consequences have fallen in our lap."
Schmidt admitted that the lack of experience were Sexton to be unavailable was a worry. "Paddy Jackson and Ian Madigan have a handful [of caps] each. That's a very big gap in terms of learning, experience and opportunity to maybe make some errors and learn from them. And they will be surrounded by some experienced players.
"So it's important for us to try to get the right players around the 10 if it's not Johnny."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Hugh Godwin talks to France Sevens coach Frederic Pomarel about the controversial Olympics loophole that could lead to Steffon Armitage playing for Les Bleus
"If England flounder in the next World Cup the knives will be out - six-year contract or not." Tom Hamilton on the new contract for the England coaches
The All Blacks face their toughest task of the Rugby Championship at Ellis Park this weekend, writes Craig Dowd
With the deadline for World Cup ticket applications now over, Tom May outlines his hopes, gripes and wishes for next year's global gathering