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Dublin: 8 °C Wednesday 20 August, 2014

Ligament damage rules Vunipola out for remainder of Six Nations

The Saracens number eight’s new focus will be regaining fitness in time to face Ulster in the Heineken Cup.

Image: Andrew Matthews

ENGLAND NUMBER EIGHT Billy Vunipola will miss the final two matches of this season’s Six Nations.

The 21-year-old Saracen suffered an ankle injury when tackled by Devin Toner in the first half of the Saturday’s 13 – 10 win over Ireland at Twickenham.

Vunipola, whose brother Mako also featured in the win, underwent a scan this morning and the results have revealed ligament damage.

The injury means that Stuart Lancaster will be without the powerful ball-carrier for their Triple Crown bid against Wales on March 9 as well as the trip to Rome on the final day.

Against Ireland, Ben Morgan came off the bench to help his side turn a 3 – 0 lead into a 13 – 10 win and the Gloucester man is the front-runner to again fill the number eight shirt for the remainder of the Championship.

No exact time-frame has been suggested for Vunipola’s return to fitness, so it is unclear if he will return in time (or, in good time for) Saracens’ Heineken Cup quarter-final trip to Ulster in early April.

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