Leinster hooker Richardt Strauss’ weekend has gone from bad to worse as the 26 year old who made his Ireland debut last year was ruled out for ten weeks with ankle ligament damage that will see him miss the Six Nations.
The South-African won his first cap against the country of his birth during the November Series but was substituted during Saturday’s 29-20 win over Exeter and tests revealed that he will need a long lay-off.
Strauss was in line to challenge Ulster man Rory Best for the No.2 shirt after impressing in recent months.
Ireland head coach Declan Kidney added even players extended Ireland training squad following the Heineken Cup games at the weekend as they prepare for the opening game of the RBS 6 Nations and the O2 Ireland Wolfhounds clash with England Saxons on Friday.
James Coughlan, Tommy O’Donnell, Mike Sherry, Damien Varley, Ian Keatley from Munster and Rhys Ruddock and
Kevin McLaughlin of Leinster join up for training with the squad this week.