England play down Monye injury fears
June 19, 2012
England's Ugo Monye lies injured during his side's victory in Potchefstroom © Getty Images
Winger Ugo Monye is a major doubt for England's third Test clash with South Africa in Port Elizabeth on Saturday after picking up a head injury in the 57-31 victory over the SA Barbarians (North) on Tuesday night.
The Harlequins winger was taken to hospital after being knocked unconscious in a tackle in the first half of the game at Profert Olen Park. The 29-year-old, who was playing his first match of the tour after recovering from a hamstring injury, received prolonged attention on the field before being carried off on a stretcher but head coach Stuart Lancaster offered a positive outlook post game.
"Ugo was knocked out during the tackle. He was taken to hospital but he has come round and he is fine, albeit a bit groggy. I have only just had medical updates but I think he will be travelling back with us. He will go through the concussion protocols and he will struggle to be fit for Saturday."
Reflecting on his side's eight-tries-to-four victory, Lancaster added: "There are lots of positives we can take positives from the performance although there were one or two areas where we let it slip, particularly in that third quarter defensively.
"I think it was important to put in a positive performance. We wanted to improve on the quality of the performance we put in last week. I thought there was a better intensity and shape about what we did. I thought the boys adapted to the conditions better, and they have been here a week now. It was good for the boys in the stand watching as well."
Captain George Robson was delighted to see off a determined Barbarians side and has now urged the Test side to deliver a similar result against the Springboks on Saturday. "We can take a lot from it and a lot of the younger guys have come through it. It was a bit hairy out there and it could have gone one of two ways when we had a man in the sin-bin.
"I think the younger guys will have learned a lot from that, in sticking to our approach, backing things up and turning things around again. It is great to get the win. We said we wanted to get the win and help build the momentum going into the last week, finishing the season on a high."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
John Taylor argues the world's best XVs players must be given a chance to play in the Olympics to increase the appeal of the game
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament
A selection of the best pictures from England's historic World Cup triumph in Paris as they beat Canada 21-9