George North boost for Wales
January 5, 2013
Scarlets winger George North faces a race to be fit for Wales' Six Nations opener next month © Getty Images
Wales winger George North has been cleared of serious injury having been stretchered off during the Scarlets' RaboDirect PRO12 defeat to Ulster on Friday night.
The 20-year-old was sidelined in the second half of his side's 47-15 drubbing at Ravenhill following a heavy blow to his head. It was immediately feared that he would miss Wales' opening Six Nations clash with Ireland at the Millennium Stadium on February 2 and while his fitness for the Cardiff clash remains uncertain, the Scarlets have revealed the injury is not as bad as first thought.
"The Scarlets would like to express their gratitude for the concern raised by supporters and colleagues in the rugby world regarding George North following the neck injury he sustained against Ulster on Friday evening at Ravenhill," the Scarlets said in a statement.
"The Scarlets winger was taken to hospital after the incident where as a precaution his neck was both x-rayed and scanned. The results from the two scans showed that there was no significant or serious damage to his neck.
"He will be assessed further by the Scarlets medical team on Monday. It is too early to assess the full extent of the injury or indeed the recovery period at this stage."
Wales are battling a worrying injury list that includes fly-half Rhys Priestland who has already been ruled out of the Six Nations with a torn Achilles that also looks likely to sideline him for the for the British & Irish Lions tour to Australia in the summer.
Also causing an injury headache for caretaker Wales coach Rob Howley, who will take charge of the side as Warren Gatland concentrates on his Lions duties, are props Craig Mitchell and Aaron Jarvis, hookers Huw Bennett and Ken Owens, locks Alun Wyn Jones, Ian Evans and Luke Charteris and flanker Dan Lydiate.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"The real problem rugby faces is the concussion tests in place can be manipulated by the players." Part two of Rory Lamont on concussion. Part one is here
"The Lions is a meritocracy, pure and simple." The Crooked Feed gives its view on Gatland's call for a Lions quota system
The latest Week in Pictures brings you a selection of the best snaps from around the rugby world with a topless Carlin Isles and scantily clad Waratahs players featuring
"There is a duty to ensure that every person who decides to participate in rugby has an understanding of the possible lasting effects of concussion." Rory Lamont tells his story