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Tadhg Beirne to miss rest of Six Nations and much of season

By PA
Tadhg Beirne of Ireland leaves the pitch with an injury during the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Ireland and France at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin. (Photo By Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Ireland lock Tadhg Beirne will miss the remainder of the Guinness Six Nations after being ruled out for up to 12 weeks with an ankle injury.

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The 31-year-old Munster player was due to undergo surgery on Thursday, having been forced off early in the second half of Saturday’s 32-19 win over France in Dublin.

British and Irish Lion Beirne, who has started his country’s last 14 Tests, left the Aviva Stadium on crutches, with his forthcoming absence a major blow for Andy Farrell’s team.

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“Tadhg Beirne will undergo surgery today on the ankle injury he sustained in Saturday’s win over France,” read a tweet from the Irish Rugby Football Union.

“Unfortunately, Tadhg will be ruled out for up to 12 weeks.”

Head coach Farrell said following the weekend game that Beirne’s issue “did not look great”, with his fears subsequently confirmed.

Grand Slam-chasing Ireland sit top of the championship table on the back of bonus-point wins over Wales and France ahead of a round-three trip to Italy on February 25.

Ulster captain Iain Henderson replaced Beirne on Saturday and is the obvious choice to come into the second row to partner James Ryan in Rome.

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Leinster pair Ryan Baird and Joe McCarthy and Connacht’s Cian Prendergast are the other options available to Farrell.

Meanwhile Munster have named their team to play the Ospreys in the URC this weekend. Ben Healy is among the replacements after returning from international duty with Scotland.

Munster: Shane Daly; Liam Coombes, Antoine Frisch, Malakai Fekitoa, Simon Zebo; Joey Carbery, Paddy Patterson; Josh Wycherley, Niall Scannell, Roman Salanoa; Jean Kleyn, Fineen Wycherley; Jack O’Donoghue (C), John Hodnett, Gavin Coombes.

Replacements: Diarmuid Barron, Mark Donnelly, Stephen Archer, Jack O’Sullivan, Alex Kendellen, Ethan Coughlan, Ben Healy, Rory Scannell.

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