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Sexton took 'bang on his thigh' but Ireland say replacement was tactical

Peter O’Mahony and Bundee Aki have passed HIA2 and could be available against Japan.

Updated Sep 23rd 2019, 8:23 AM

IRELAND SAY JOHNNY Sexton took a knock to his thigh in the opening half of their World Cup win over Scotland yesterday but insist his replacement in the second half was a tactical decision.

Sexton handed place-kicking duties to Conor Murray in the first half, sparking concern among some fans, but an Ireland spokesperson said that the out-half is not an injury concern ahead of the second Pool A clash with Japan on Saturday.

“Johnny Sexton suffered a bang on his thigh after 20 minutes and had an awareness of it, but he was removed tactically,” said the spokesperson. 

jonathan-sexton-celebrates-winning Sexton took a knock to the thigh against Scotland. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

As things stand, Ireland report that Sexton will be available for the fixture against Japan in Shizuoka.

Meanwhile, Ireland have confirmed that Peter O’Mahony and Bundee Aki passed HIA2 [the second post-match head injury assessment], having failed HIA1s when removed during the 27-3 win over Scotland.

Having passed HIA2, O’Mahony and Aki will undergo HIA3 this afternoon.

Ireland said that if both players pass HIA3 today, they could return to full training tomorrow, meaning they would be fit for Saturday’s clash with the Japanese.

Josh van der Flier required stitches to a cut over his eye before suffering from cramp late in the game against Scotland, with Niall Scannell replacing him in the back row.

Tighthead prop Tadhg Furlong “received running repairs on-field” but his second-half replacement was also tactical. 

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Meanwhile, Ireland said Rob Kearney, Joey Carbery, and Keith Earls are “all fully fit and will train fully this week.”

Carbery and Earls took part in the warm-up before the win over Scotland, although Kearney did not and his foot injury may still be a worry.

Robbie Henshaw remains a major doubt for the Japan game with his hamstring injury, although Ireland said the centre is “running well and his rehab is accelerating, so we are pretty hopeful on him as well.”

About the author:

Murray Kinsella  / Reports from Yokohama

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