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Dublin: 14 °C Sunday 16 June, 2019
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Rory Best doubtful for quarter-final with Wales

Ulster hooker’s participation in the last eight showdown is in the balance after he sprained the AC join in his right shoulder.

Best will undergo a scan tomorrow.
Best will undergo a scan tomorrow.
Image: INPHO/Dan Sheridan

IRELAND’S FOCUS TURNS to their Rugby World cup quarter-final with Wales on Saturday morning.

But it looks, this morning, like Declan Kidney will have to plan without hooker Rory Best this week.

The Ulster man’s participation in the last eight showdown is in serious doubt after he sprained the AC join in his right shoulder during yesterday’s 36-6 victory over Italy at Otago Stadium.

Irish management have yet to call in a replacement, though a clearer idea of the damage will be known after a scan tomorrow. The players are on a rest day today.

“Rory’s doubtful for the weekend but we haven’t written him off just yet,” said manager Paul McNaughton to reporters overnight. “We’ll assess it tomorrow and have more information then. He’s definitely doubtful.

“He’s getting manipulation at the moment. We’ll have a better idea tomorrow after a morning’s treatment.”

If Best is lost to the Irish, it will be the second hooker to leave the camp. Jerry Flannery returned home two and a half weeks ago with a recurrence of a calf problem.

McNaughton revealed prop Cian Healy was interviewed, meanwhile, about the attempted eye gouge by Italy hooker Leonardo Ghiraldini during the first half of yesterday’s critical Pool C showdown.

The tournament’s citing commissioner has yet to cite Ghiraldini for the incident that provoked a furious response from Healy. What do you think?

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