Andrew Sheridan told that neck injury could end career

 

Andrew Sheridan's long career at the sharp end of the scrum may be drawing to a close. The England loose-head prop, who played in the 2007 World Cup final and was a Test Lion in South Africa two years later, is suffering from a neck injury and has been told to rest for a month while doctors weigh up his chances of playing again. "Andrew is out, possibly forever," said Bernard Laporte, his coach at Toulon.

The quietly humorous 34-year-old forward, who was capped 40 times by England and is enduringly popular amongst those right-thinking red-rose supporters who saw him as a welcome antidote to the celebritisation of rugby at the top level, has enjoyed great success in the French club game since leaving Sale for the Côte d'Azur last year. Sadly, Laporte seemed less than convinced that the good times would continue.

"He has always had a problem between his neck and his shoulder," the coach said. "The surgeon has told him it's not necessary to have a new operation. He will now have a month of complete rest and if the pain does not go away, he will have to stop playing."

It is not just the red-rose types who are struggling for fitness. Scotland, who have precious little in the way of front-line talent, may have to work their way through the forthcoming Six Nations without Sean Lamont, their most experienced back.

Lamont mangled his ankle ligaments while on Pro 12 duty for Glasgow last Friday night and while no fracture has been detected, he is not expected to play again for "a few weeks". This leaves him in obvious risk of missing the opening tournament match against Ireland in Dublin in early February.

England, meanwhile, remain active on the recruitment front as they seek to piece together a state-of-the-art support staff for the national team. Scott Drawer, the deputy director of "performance solutions" at the English Institute of Sport whose recent work with the British Olympic Association bolstered his reputation as a leading figure in his field, is the latest addition to a back-room network boasting all mod cons: medical and fitness staff, analysts, legal counsel…you name it.

The one-time leader of UK Sport's research and innovation team is joining the Twickenham throng as "athletic performance manager" and will work closely with Matt Parker, recruited from the cycling fraternity this time last year.

While Drawer will concentrate largely on the England representative teams below Test level, he will be responsible for building and maintaining positive relationships with the top-flight Premiership teams so that "development of the players is optimised for both club and country", as Parker put it.

It is difficult to think of an individual more optimal than the New Zealand No 8 Kieran Read, and the All Black back-rower from Papakura received his just deserts when he was named the International Rugby Board's Player of the Year, beating four other candidates, including the Wales full-back Leigh Halfpenny, to the gong.

News
Susan Sarandon described David Bowie as
peopleSusan Sarandon reveals more on her David Bowie romance
Sport
Arsenal supporters gather for a recent ‘fan party’ in New Jersey
football
News
i100
Sport
sportDidier Drogba returns to Chelsea on one-year deal
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
The Secret Cinema performance of Back to the Future has been cancelled again
film
Life and Style
Balmain's autumn/winter 2014 campaign, shot by Mario Sorrenti and featuring Binx Walton, Cara Delevingne, Jourdan Dunn, Ysaunny Brito, Issa Lish and Kayla Scott
fashionHow Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
News
people
News
BBC broadcaster and presenter Evan Davis, who will be taking over from Jeremy Paxman on Newsnight
peopleForget Paxman - what will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Life and Style
fashionCustomer complained about the visibly protruding ribs
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Arts and Entertainment
Jo Brand says she's mellowed a lot
tvJo Brand says shows encourage people to laugh at the vulnerable
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
News
Tovey says of homeless charity the Pillion Trust : 'If it weren't for them and the park attendant I wouldn't be here today.'
people
Sport
Rhys Williams
commonwealth games
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Evan Davis: The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing to take over at Newsnight

The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing

What will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Inside a church for Born Again Christians: Speaking to God in a Manchester multiplex

Inside a church for Born Again Christians

As Britain's Anglican church struggles to establish its modern identity, one branch of Christianity is booming
Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and me: How Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Parisian couturier Pierre Balmain made his name dressing the mid-century jet set. Today, Olivier Rousteing – heir to the house Pierre built – is celebrating their 21st-century equivalents. The result? Nothing short of Balmania
Cancer, cardiac arrest, HIV and homelessness - and he's only 39

Incredible survival story of David Tovey

Tovey went from cooking for the Queen to rifling through bins for his supper. His is a startling story of endurance against the odds – and of a social safety net failing at every turn
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little