Dan Sheridan/INPHO Leinster captain Johnny Sexton picked up a facial injury against Connacht.
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Leinster and Ireland face wait on Sexton after out-half suffers facial injury
The 37-year-old could be facing another spell on the sidelines.

LEINSTER AND IRELAND are facing an anxious wait on the fitness of Johnny Sexton after the out-half suffered a facial injury in the province’s 41-12 win over Connacht tonight.

Sexton left the action with a noticeable indentation on his cheek following a head-on-head collision with Connacht’s Jarrad Butler. 

The out-half is now set to go for an x-ray on a suspected fractured cheekbone. Leinster have Champions Cup games against Racing and Gloucester on the horizon, while Ireland begin their Six Nations campaign away to Wales on 4 February.

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen said Sexton was in good spirits after the game but admitted the 37-year-old could be facing another spell on the sidelines ahead of an important run of fixtures for club and country – Sexton missed two of Ireland’s three November internationals with injury and tonight was his first start for the province since a win against Munster on 22 October.

“He’s OK, fair old whack on the cheek,” Cullen said. “We’ll see tomorrow, he’ll get it tested.

“Let’s wait and see, we’ll have a better idea tomorrow.

“Everyone can see he got a bang on the cheek, so he’ll get an x-ray tomorrow, and we’ll go from there.”

Sexton was the tackler in the collision with Butler, an incident which saw no penalty awarded by referee Eoghan Cross.

“It’s one of those unfortunate incidents, they’re getting plenty of air-time,” Cullen added. “[We] Need some clarity.

“There’s a bit of muddiness, they’re not all the same.

“Ball carriers can actually see a tackler that’s high and can head straight for them, all the onus is on the defending player. It needs to be clearer.”

Get instant updates on your province on The42 app. With Laya Healthcare, official health and wellbeing partner to Leinster, Munster and Connacht Rugby.

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