Irish hit by double withdrawal
February 1, 2000
Ireland's unlikely hopes of winning this year's Six Nations championship suffered an early blow on Monday when British Lions lock Jeremy Davidson and rising fly-half Ronan O'Gara pulled out of the squad to face England at Twickenham on Saturday because of injury.
Davidson, who was a member of the British Lions side that beat South Africa 2-1 in the 1997 series and plays for French outfit Castres, was ruled out because of an aggravated elbow injury.
The 21-year-old O'Gara, who was certain of winning his first cap after inspiring Munster to this season's European Cup quarter-finals, has been forced to pull out because of a knee complaint.
No replacement will be called in for Davidson as there are three second rowers in the squad.
But veteran Eric Elwood, selected for the Ireland A team to play England on Friday, has replaced O'Gara in the squad.
The team for the Twickenham clash will be named Tuesday.
"At the crux of this England team is a lack of fear, they are not afraid to throw playbooks out of the window." Tom Hamilton reports from Twickenham
"These little deft touches, the nuances O'Driscoll has perfected are what Ireland will miss most." Tom Hamilton on Brian O'Driscoll's final Test in Dublin
After Brian O'Driscoll's emotional final Ireland appearance on home soil, and seeing the Six Nations boil down to a three-horse race, we bring you the Weekend in PIctures
Last year's thrashing at the hands of Wales was not the first time England have fallen to their rivals. Scrum Sevens looks at whether they have bounced back the following year