Ireland expect Johnny Sexton to 'bounce back quickly' after failing HIA

The experienced out-half was replaced by Joey Carbery in the first half of the win over Scotland.

Murray Kinsella reports from Murrayfield

JOE SCHMIDT SAYS Johnny Sexton suffered a head injury in the first-half of Ireland’s 22-13 win over Scotland in Edinburgh.

The Leinster man had a tough 23-minute shift at Murrayfield, shipping several heavy hits from Scotland, before being replaced by Joey Carbery.

Jonathan Sexton goes off with a blood injury Sexton was replaced in the first half. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Speaking post-match, Ireland boss Schmidt said Sexton had failed his Head Injury Assessment after taking a blow in the build-up his side’s second try.

“Johnny failed an HIA,” said Schmidt. “It was in the lead-up to our second try, really. He hit the ground quite hard but he’s pretty good now. So we’d be pretty confident that he’d bounce back quickly.

“We’re always going to err on the side of caution with those just because we want to look after people.”

Sexton took some heavy punishment in the tackle from Scotland but Schmidt underlined that it had worked against the hosts for the Jacob Stockdale try.

“It’s because he is who he is,” said Schmidt of the big hits on Sexton. “That’s going to happen.

“He probably knew he was only going to play 20 minutes so he tried to jam it all into one quarter. He certainly got into a few contact situations.

“His pass release for Jacob to get the space in the set play was perfect. You know, the guy maybe could have got to Jacob if he wasn’t that intent on getting at Johnny, so sometimes that works to our advantage.

“He got the first knock there and then another knock a little bit after that, so it was a little bit cumulative really. He got a stamp on the ankle and it was really when they [Ireland's medical team] were going on to treat that that they decided he wasn’t 100% and that they needed to do an HIA and he didn’t pass the HIA.” 

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Schmidt indicated that the stamp on Sexton had not been deliberate and was actually friendly fire.

“He copped a stamp,” said Schmidt. “I don’t even think it was a Scottish foot, it was one of our guys who tripped over him.”

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