Kearney injury gives Irish reason to worry

Fullback Rob Kearney is Ireland’s major worry ahead of their two toughest Rugby World Cup Pool D matches after limping off during the 44-10 win over Romania on Sunday.

The 29-year-old limped away after scoring Ireland’s fifth try in the second half at Wembley and was replaced soon afterwards.

“Rob was involved in a high-speed play after coming on the pitch and just after scoring the try he’s jarred himself,” said Ireland coach Joe Schmidt.

“We hope it’s not too much but the next 24 to 48 hours will tell if he’s done anything telling for next week.

“It’s through his glute and hip. It happened when his knee hit the ground,” added the New Zealander.

Kearney, who had a hamstring injury heading into the tournament, is integral to Ireland’s hopes of succeeding in a tournament where they have never gone beyond the quarter-finals.

The Irish – who prior to the Romania game had beaten Canada 50-7 – face Italy next Sunday and round off their first round engagements against unpredictable heavyweights France, who under coach Philippe Saint-Andre are yet to beat the Irish in four meetings.

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