Ireland’s Peter O’Mahony ruled out for rest of World Cup with knee injury

• Back-row forward suffered knee ligament injury against France
• Captain Paul O’Connell and Jonathan Sexton to undergo scans

The Ireland back-row forward Peter O’Mahony has been ruled out of the rest of the World Cup with a knee ligament injury, his team manager Mick Kearney has said.

The captain Paul O’Connell and fly-half Jonathan Sexton, who were also taken off during the 24-9 win over France in Cardiff, will undergo scans on Monday to determine the extent of their injuries. Ireland have said no decision has been made as to squad replacements for O’Mahony or Jared Payne, who is also out for the rest of the tournament with a foot injury.

“Paul O’Connell appears to have suffered a significant hamstring injury and was hospitalised overnight, he’s having scans later today to clarify the extent of the injury,” said Mick Kearney. “Peter O’Mahony has suffered a knee ligament injury and is returning to Dublin today for specialist opinion and will take no further part in the tournament. Johnny Sexton suffered a groin injury, initial clinical assessment is encouraging and we await scanning later today.

“After an incredibly physical encounter a host of players are reporting bumps and soreness and will have to be managed, but nothing more serious than that,” continued Kearney. “As soon as we have more clarity on the injury front we will be in a position to make decisions on replacement players.

“At the moment definitively only Peter O’Mahony has been ruled out. Paul was in hospital overnight and he was obviously very sore. In relation to Jared Payne’s replacement that’s similar too. I’d be pretty sure that a decision would be made later today. The coaches did meet this morning and discuss a number of different options.”

Ireland rugby coach Joe Schmidt proud of win against France

The Ireland full-back Rob Kearney has accepted O’Connell’s World Cup is effectively at an end, branding the talismanic lock’s absence “a monumental loss”, but he said O’Connell, who is due to retire at the end of the World Cup, was “beaming ear to ear” at Ireland’s victory despite fearing the worst on a personal front.

“I suppose the fact that he’s been around more than any of us at World Cups, it is difficult for him,” said Rob Kearney, accepting O’Connell’s fate. “We felt awful for him but I think it was great to see the sheer delight on his face after the game in terms of what we’d achieved as opposed to feeling sorry for himself.

“That was brilliant to see and a great sign of the man that he was able to put his own woes behind him and think of the team’s achievement first,” the full-back continued. “He was just delighted, he was beaming from ear to ear, when you consider that he was so happy and ecstatic after the game given the pain he was in at half-time, it’s small little moments like that that make changing rooms after games really special.”

Ireland could suffer a further blow in losing Sean O’Brien through suspension after the back-row forward was caught on camera punching France’s Pascal Papé in the final Pool D match. The referee Nigel Owens missed the incident but retrospective punishment could be applied to the Leinster man.

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