Ireland’s Six Nations preparations have been halted somewhat after Johnny Sexton was forced off the field during Leinster’s European Rugby Champions Cup match against Castres on Friday night.
The fly-half limped off the field 22 minutes into Leinster’s 24-24 draw with the French side with a calf injury, raising concerns over his availability ahead of the Six Nations.
Indeed, while the injury may not seem too serious, it must be remembered that Sexton has only completed just one of the nine games he has started this season with either Ireland or Leinster.
Therefore, although the injury in itself may only prove to be minor when Sexton does undergo a scan next week, any doubts will cause alarm bell to go off in Irish rugby circles.
Despite Paddy Jackson proving to be a more than able deputy since Ireland’s summer tour of South Africa, Sexton remains Ireland’s first choice playmaker, as a result, any such injuries will cause concern for Joe Schmidt and the Irish management.
Alan Drumm, Pundit Arena
In this week’s edition of The Oval Office Podcast, we speak to the Pro12 Communications Director Adam Redmond, who outlines how the league will evolve in the coming seasons.