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Dublin: 14°C Friday 23 April 2021

'It was an outstanding 35 seconds': Haskell's long-awaited return short-lived after head collision

The England flanker had been out for seven months after reconstructive surgery.

JAMES HASKELL WAS jokingly hailed for contributing “an outstanding 35 seconds” after his return from a seven-month injury lay-off was dramatically cut short on Sunday.

England flanker Haskell came on as a second-half replacement in Wasps’ 22-16 Premiership victory over Leicester Tigers, having recovered from reconstructive surgery on a big toe, only to exit the field almost immediately after banging his head into the hip of Freddie Burns as he made a tackle.

Haskell appeared to be momentarily knocked out, but was soon seen smiling as he watched the remainder of the game from the bench.

Wasps director of rugby Dai Young told BBC Radio Coventry and Warwickshire: “The most important thing is that he is fine. He would have obviously have wanted a lot more [time on the pitch], but thankfully he is okay.

Britain Rugby WCup England Uruguay Source: Jon Super

Everybody was concerned initially, but once they had seen he was okay, he was getting a little bit of stick in the dressing room. It was an outstanding 35 seconds, wasn’t it?”

The injury appears unlikely to jeopardise Haskell’s hopes of making Eddie Jones’ squad for the Six Nations, but Young acknowledged the forward could struggle to make next weekend’s Champions Cup clash with Toulouse.

“It all depends on what the medical team say now and after looking at him,” Young added.

“It will be tight and fingers crossed he will be available, but obviously player welfare is the most important thing.”

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