Ulster captain Rory Best faces a Christmas and New Year spell on the sidelines as one of SIX Ireland casualties in a bruising defeat by the All Blacks in Dublin last night.
The hooker will undergo surgery tomorrow for a cheek-bone injury that forced him to retire after 22 minutes.
He could now be out for eight to 10 weeks, a blow to Ulster in their Magners League and Heineken Cup campaigns.
Best's Ravenhill team-mate Stephen Ferris scored the opening try of a hugely competitive game. However, the New Zealanders power-surged back to win 38-18.
But defiant Ireland coach Declan Kidney last night vowed to carry on entertaining.
For the full story, see this week's Sunday Life.