IRELAND HAVE BEEN hit with a double injury blow after captain Brian O’Driscoll and in-form hooker Rory Best were ruled out of the Guinness Series in November.
The IRFU confirmed on Tuesday, “O’Driscoll picked up an ankle injury in the game against the Cardiff Blues.
“Following further scans and specialist review by the Ireland medical team, it has been decided that the injury will require surgery to repair ligament damage, ruling out O’Driscoll from playing for eight to 12 weeks.
“Best has also been ruled out of the games against South Africa, Fiji and Argentina, due to a neck injury he sustained last Friday playing in the RaboDirect Pro12 game in Wales against the Dragons.
“Following a scan and medical review, it was confirmed that Best has sprained ligaments in his neck which will require a rest and rehabilitation period of between 4-6 weeks before a further assessment of the injury.”
While there is ample cover in Ireland’s backs division, it appears likely that Richardt Strauss of Leinster will now take the number two jersey against his native country, South Africa, on 10 November.
Declan Kidney is due to speak to the media, regarding the injuries and other squad matters, at Donnybrook from 4:30pm today.