England sweat on Wilko fitness
October 2, 2011
Wilkinson goes down injured during his side's narrow victory over Scotland at Eden Park © Getty Images
England manager Martin Johnson admitted he is concerned over the fitness of fly-half Jonny Wilkinson ahead of next weekend's Rugby World Cup quarter-final against France.
Wilkinson, who was replaced near the end of England's 16-12 victory over Scotland yesterday, had a scan on his right forearm. The results were inconclusive and the England medics need another day at least to determine the extent of the injury.
"Jonny got scanned last night on his upper forearm, elbow region," said Johnson. "That didn't show anything and while that is good news, obviously at this point in the tournament it is a little bit of a worry. We need another day to see where he is and whether he will be available for the weekend."
Centre Mike Tindall has suffered a dead leg and England will wait another 24 hours before deciding when he can return to training while winger Delon Armitage faces a disciplinary hearing in Auckland on Monday after being cited for a "dangerous high tackle" on Scotland's Chris Paterson.
Wilkinson suffered another poor display with the boot against Scotland - missing three penalties in five first-half minutes as England tried to get a foothold in the game. But Johnson preferred to highlight the 32-year-old's crucial role in dragging his side back into the game.
"He missed some kicks at goal clearly but when we went to 12-3 we were potentially going home," said Johnson. "But then he puts over a drop goal that gets us to 12-6 and he scores the next penalty. He kept his nerve and played with the courage and tenacity that he always plays with so I thought he showed the character that we needed along with everyone else.
"At times the team didn't play well and any individual probably had an error in that game at some point, and good points as well. It was one of those game where we fought and fought and eventually got there to win."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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