Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Gatland's Anger over Shaw Injury; EXCLUSIVE

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Gatland's Anger over Shaw Injury; EXCLUSIVE

Article excerpt


ENGLAND lock Simon Shaw was undergoing scans today to determine the extent of a spleen injury that could force him out of London Wasps' Heineken Cup semi-final with Munster in Dublin on Sunday.

Warren Gatland, the Wasps director of rugby, alleged it was the boot of Leeds No8 Colm Rigney that inflicted the damage and called for the player to be "given a year's ban if he keeps on doing this sort of thing".

Rigney was banned for nine weeks for stamping on Wasps hooker Phil Greening at the start of the season and while it appears unlikely any citing can now take place, Gatland promised that the Leeds player would be "caught next year" when the teams meet.

Shaw, who is one of five players in line for the Professional Rugby Players' Association Players' Player of the Year award, is critical to Wasps' lineout and his power around the pitch will be needed against a Munster side that has twice been beaten finalists. They boast ex-Wasps centre Rob Henderson and key members of the Ireland team that defeated England at Twickenham in the Six Nations this year.

Gatland made it clear he wanted something done about Rigney's use of the boot and he said: "I went to see the match referee before kick-off at Leeds on Sunday and asked to be aware of offthe-ball stuff because it had gone on during our first league match with Leeds. The ref did well and the stamping incident on Shaw was flagged by a touch judge but he put his flag down after a penalty was awarded for something else at that ruck.

"It happened off the ball and Simon was stamped on in the ribs by the same player who was banned for nine weeks for an incident in the first match between the teams this season.

"We thought it was a case of bruising but there is a problem with the spleen and that is why he's gone for the scan."

If Shaw is ruled out, 23-year-old Martin Purdy will come into the second row of a pack that also featuresflanker Paul Volley, who is understood to have signed for French side Castres next season. …

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