Ireland centre Gordon D’Arcy has been ruled out of the rest of the RBS Six Nations with a foot injury, adding to the growing list of players unavailable for the Irish. The Irish Rugby Football Union announced today that the Leinster player is likely to be side-lined for six weeks, meaning he will miss the remaining games with Scotland, France and Italy.
D’Arcy – who has partnered the talismanic Brian O’Driscoll a record 50 times at centre for Ireland – experienced discomfort in his right foot prompting a scan that revealed the injury.
An IRFU statement said: “Following a scan yesterday afternoon it was confirmed that D’Arcy has a stress injury to a bone in his foot. “The injury will require immobilisation in a boot for at least four weeks, with a projected return to play of six weeks, pending further tests and specialist review.”
The injury is yet another significant blow to coach Declan Kidney’s plans as he prepares his side for the trip to Murrayfield next weekend. Having already seen Simon Zebo, Jonathon Sexton and Mike McCarthy ruled out of the game with Scotland due to injury, he then lost prop Cian Healy to a ban after being cited for stamping on England’s Dan Cole in last weekend’s 12-6 defeat at the Aviva Stadium.
Ireland currently sit fourth in the championship with one win from two games, but they are level on points with Scotland, Wales and Italy heading into the third round of fixtures. Kidney will be forced into making at least five changes to the team that starts in Scotland, and with the Irish squad thread-bare as it is, he can ill-afford to lose any other key players from his team if he harbours any hopes of challenging for this year’s title.