Ankle operation ends season for Leinster’s Josh van der Flier

Leinster and Ireland flanker Josh van der Flier will miss the PRO12 play-offs as well as Ireland’s summer tour to South Africa, after he was ruled out of action for the next eight weeks.

Van der Flier saw a specialist on Monday for assessment of the ankle injury he picked up in the recent PRO12 defeat by Ulster at Kingspan Stadium. It was decided he would need an operation to repair the damage. He underwent successful surgery yesterday, but his recuperation is expected to take eight weeks.

Leinster face Ulster at the RDS Arena in their PRO12 semi-final on Friday May 20.

Van der Flier made his international debut in the Six Nations in February and had been expected to feature in Joe Schmidt’s plans for the trip to South Africa in June.

With Sean O’Brien also a fitness doubt, his unavailability is a blow to both Leo Cullen and Schmidt.

Leinster had better news on Rob Kearney and Johnny Sexton yesterday. Both were withdrawn against Benetton Treviso but are making good progress from ankle and quad complaints.

Meanwhile, Newport Gwent Dragons have announced that Kingsley Jones will continue to lead the region as head coach next season, and that they have dispensed with the Director of Rugby role previously occupied by Lyn Jones.

Chief executive Stuart Davies confirmed: “We will be reviewing the roles and responsibilities of the wider management team, whilst Kingsley and I will also discuss bolstering the coaching team to add further support, skills and experience.”

Elsewhere, Glasgow Warriors have secured Scotland veteran Sean Lamont for next season after he signed a new one-year deal with the club.

Lamont has 104 caps for Scotland and is close to becoming a centurion at Glasgow Warriors, having played 98 times for the club over two spells.


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