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Sale issue Tuilagi warning: 'If he gets another serious injury...'

(Photo by Bob Bradford - CameraSport via Getty Images)

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Sale boss Alex Sanderson has warned that Manu Tuilagi could be just one more big injury away from the end of his career. Director of rugby Sanderson has revealed that the Sharks will continue to limit England centre Tuilagi’s appearances in a bid to end his long-running cycle of injury problems.


Tuilagi sat out the 25-15 Sale loss to Exeter and could be absent from Saturday’s trip to Gloucester too. Boss Sanderson believes there is precious little margin for error left when it comes to Tuilagi and injuries.

“It’s part of his long-term development,” said Sanderson. “Let’s just talk about his history. For seven or eight years, he has only ever played twelve games in a season. He knows that if he gets another serious injury, that might be it. That might be his career.

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“If you fail to learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it. Even though he is really fresh now and good to go, I don’t want to be another coach in a long line of coaches who pushes him too hard so he gets re-injured at some point in the season.

“You have got to look at his past history and when he wants those games to occur, not just to keep playing him because he feels fresh. That is what has broken him every other time.

“Of course I want to play him because he is great for the team and is in good form, but this is more about him as an individual, getting him through the season and getting him fit for England because that is the dream for us both and I’m sure Eddie (Jones).”


Tuilagi had spoken some weeks ago about the lengths he went in the pre-season regarding his fitness to ensure he was primed to impress when chosen for Sale in their round one win over Bath.  


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