CENS fly-half Owen Farrell and Bath centre Kyle Eastmond joined England’s lengthening list of Six Nations injury worries as their clubs progressed to the European Rugby Champions Cup quarter-finals yesterday.
Farrell was withdrawn with a knee injury during Sarries’ 18-6 defeat at Clermont Auvergne, while Eastmond damaged his shoulder in a decisive 20-15 victory over Glasgow Warriors. Both men are now doubts for England’s Six Nations opener against Wales in Cardiff in 11 days’ time, as are Leicester lock Geoff Parling and Northampton flanker Tom Wood, who were hurt on Saturday.
England head coach Stuart Lancaster was already without Leicester centre Manu Tuilagi, Gloucester No8 Ben Morgan, Northampton pair Courtney Lawes and Ben Foden and Wasps lock Joe Launchbury.
Saracens face Racing Metro in the last eight after finishing second in their pool behind Clermont, while Wasps meet European champions Toulon after they too qualified as one of the best runners-up.
Wasps fly-half Andy Goode said: “The boys are delighted to be in the Champions Cup quarter-finals. From where the club has come from to where we are now it’s a massive achievement for everyone involved.
“We’re going up against the top side in Europe, the double champions, but we love a challenge. They’re a massive club with some superstar players, but we’ve got nothing to lose.”
Two penalty tries helped Bath hang on to beat Glasgow and win Pool Four, setting up a quarter-final at Leinster. Northampton visit Clermont as English sides occupy half of the last eight for the first time in 17 years.
European Rugby Champions Cup
Racing Metro v Saracens
Toulon v Wasps
Clermont v Northampton Saints
Leinster v Bath
Matches to be played 3-5 April
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Gloucester v Connacht
Exeter v Newcastle
Dragons v Cardiff Blues
London Irish v Edinburgh
Matches to be played 2-5 April