Warburton back in action

Tue, 24 Sep 2013 17:44
Large sam warburton celebrates Large sam warburton injured Large sam warburton in stands

B&I Lions skipper Sam Warburton will return to action well ahead of schedule for Cardiff Blues’ match against Leinster on Friday.

British and Irish Lions skipper Sam Warburton will return to action well ahead of schedule for Cardiff Blues’ match against defending Pro12 champions Leinster on Friday.

The Wales flank suffered a torn hamstring in the second Test against Australia in Melbourne, an injury which kept him out of the deciding fixture with the Wallabies.

An early recovery period of between 12 and 16 weeks was the initial prediction but with Warburton returning for this weekend's trip to Leinster, the 24-year-old is well ahead of schedule.

After the Blues' disappointing defeat to Zebre last Friday, Warburton's return is the perfect tonic for boss Phil Davies as he prepares his side for a visit to last year's champions.

"We've got Sam Warburton back in the team starting and we've made a few changes," Davies confirmed.

"Some are through injury, some through necessity but it's a great challenge for us playing the champions at their home ground.

"If you can't look forward to that as a rugby player, there's something wrong with you."

The Blues have a poor record in Dublin and were comfortably beaten by Leinster at the RDS last season. But with Warburton and fellow Lions Leigh Halfpenny and Alex Cuthbert all set to start, Davies has a near full strength side available. Wales wing Harry Robinson is also set to return.

"Sam wanted to play. He himself has done a phenomenal job, as have the medical department," Davies added.

"He's five weeks ahead of schedule and that's down to his diligence. He was knocking the door down to play which is fantastic. It's really exciting.

"It says a lot about our medical department. Sam is one of the most professional players you'll ever wish to meet. It's down to him and the doctors who have been working on him.

"We've got an anti-gravity treadmill and I know that's helped his cardio vascular fitness."

A trip to Leinster is not going to be an easy task, especially following the Blues' result against Zebre. Davies though, argues his side have put the defeat behind them.

He said: "We came in on Monday and all of us made our feelings know.

"We're striving to be successful but sometimes setbacks drive teams forwards and that's what we're doing this week.

"We've trained very well and built on the work as well as looking at where we can improve for a pretty uncompromising fixture this weekend."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
PRO12
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 20 17 0 3 79
Munster 20 17 0 3 76
Scarlets 20 15 0 5 67
Ospreys 20 13 0 7 65
Ulster 20 13 1 6 64
Glasgow Warriors 20 11 0 9 57
Cardiff Blues 20 9 1 10 45
Connacht 20 9 7 11 44
Edinburgh 20 4 0 16 23
Dragons 20 4 0 16 21
Treviso 20 4 0 16 19
Zebre 20 3 0 17 18