Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 December 2014

O'Connell blow for Ireland

Paul O'Connell
Paul O'Connell

Paul O'Connell has been ruled out of Ireland's tour of New Zealand.

The Munster lock, who captained Ireland in this season's RBS 6 Nations Championship while Brian O'Driscoll recovered from shoulder surgery, misses out due to a knee injury.

O'Connell had been undergoing rehabilitation in London this week in the hope that he could a join the squad, but the Irish Rugby Football Union said he had "failed to progress to the level required to allow him to take an active part in the tour".

Connacht's Mike McCarthy had already been added to the squad as cover while O'Connell continued his recovery programme.

O'Connell is the third player to miss out on facing the All Blacks due to injury, following Ulster flanker Stephen Ferris and Leinster scrum-half Isaac Boss.

Ireland will tackle the All Blacks in Auckland on June 9, followed by further Test matches in Christchurch and Hamilton on June 16 and 23.

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