'Unfortunately, for some, I'll be back'

Wed, 25 Apr 2018 10:47
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England captain Dylan Hartley has hit back at “so-called experts” who have cast doubt on his future by vowing “unfortunately for some, I’ll be back next season”.

The Northampton Saints hooker will miss the rest of the season and England’s tour of South Africa in June due to a concussion sustained during the Six Nations.

Hartley was advised to take an extended period of rest, but insisted he is not finished yet and took aim at those who have suggested otherwise.

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The England skipper posted a picture of himself on Instagram and wrote: “Believe it or not this is a photo of me singing and not what is rumoured to be a fat lady (difficult to tell apart I know).

“I see there’s a lot of so-called experts out there in newspapers, pubs and podcasts recommending what I do with my career.

“Funnily enough I’m only listening to the medical professionals and myself.

“Fortunately/unfortunately for some, I’ll be back next season to help my respective teams push on. 

“Thank you for your support.”

The hooker has not played since he was concussed in the 24-15 Natwest 6 Nations defeat to Ireland on March 17th.

Saints confirmed yesterday that he will miss the rest of the season as well as England’s tour to South Africa because of a concussion.

Following specialist medical advice, Hartley will take an extended period of rest over the summer with a view to start Saints’ pre-season training.

“I’m very disappointed that I will not be available for selection for Saints’ remaining Premiership games, as well England’s tour to South Africa,” said Hartley.

“It has been recommended by specialists that I take a break this summer and while I find that decision hard to accept, it’s important I listen to that advice.

“I intend to use this time to recover fully from my injury, so I can be ready to hit the ground running when pre-season training starts later this summer.”

It’s not the first time that Hartley has suffered concussion problems, he suffered a series of head knocks two years ago, which prompted an extended absence.

By Peter Thompson, RugbyPass