Leslie in battle to prove fitness
February 14, 2000
UPDATE:Scotland skipper John Leslie was told on Tuesday he will travel to Dublin for the Six Nations clash with Ireland on Saturday although it has still to be decided whether he will start the game.
After indicating that he would make a firm decision on his participation on Tuesday, coach Ian McGeechan has instead opted to give his star centre further recovery time.
John Leslie has until Tuesday to prove his fitness to captain his side in their Six Nations
Championship clash with Ireland at Dublin's Lansdowne Road on Saturday.
Leslie sat out Newcastle's Premiership game at Leicester on Saturday with the hip injury he sustained in Scotland's humiliating defeat against Italy in Rome two weeks ago and he was missing from training at Murrayfield on Monday. Scotland coach Ian McGeechan has left it in the hands of the doctors to decide by Tuesday whether he will be fit enough to play next weekend.
McGeechan, who will name his side on Thursday, said: "He didn't train today. He's just been on physio all day so they are obviously going to keep a close eye on him.
"We are within 24 hours of making a decision. It has to be like that because of what we are trying to do this week. I think we've got the squad and we want to go down to the 22 by Thursday."
McGeechan refused to be drawn on whether he thinks Leslie will win his fitness battle and help lead out the Scots on Saturday. He said: "You would have to ask the medics that. I've just left it to them. I'm not going to get involved.
"Obviously we want him training tomorrow so if the problems come up that way it's the decision made. In those 24 hours we will learn a lot more. We've got to give the medics a chance to have a look at him and work with him."
McGeechan may be reluctant to risk 29-year-old Leslie in such an important game, with both Scotland and Ireland looking to kick-start their Six Nations campaign after the Irish side's mauling by England.