Pivotal blow to Ireland’s title hopes

Thu, 27 Feb 2014 17:24
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Ireland flyhalf Jonathan Sexton could be sidelined for the remainder of the Six Nations tournament due to a thumb injury.

Sexton suffered the injury in Ireland’s narrow 10-13 loss to England at Twickenham at the weekend.

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt initially expected his star flyhalf would be fit in time for next weekend’s encounter against Italy.

However, according to Racing Metro coach Laurent Labit, Sexton may play no further part in the tournament.

"Sexton has damaged ligaments in the thumb and will be unavailable for between 10 days and six weeks," said Labit.

Losing in-form Sexton comes as a major blow for Ireland, who are on four points along with England, Wales and France and top the Six Nations table due to their superior points difference.

Ulster flyhalf Paddy Jackson will likely fill the vacant No.10 jersey.