ENGLAND prop Andrew Sheridan will miss the remainder of the RBS 6 Nations campaign after tearing his calf in last Saturday’s 17-9 win over France at Twickenham.
The news is particularly galling for the 31-year-old considering Martin Johnson’s side are just two wins away from landing their first Grand Slam since 2003.
Sheridan was replaced by Alex Corbisiero in the win over the French, the London Irish front row forward also stood in for the British and Irish Lions star during the thumping win over Italy last month.
Losing Sheridan represents a significant blow, but the emergence of the New York-born Corbisiero means Johnson can at least call upon a reliable back-up.
“When Sheridan was injured for the Italy game it was, in a way, a blessing in disguise,” Johnson said. “It gave Corbs an opportunity and when he came off the bench last week it wasn’t all new to him. He was playing against a world-class scrummage and world-class players in William Servat and Nicolas Mas and he acquitted himself well.
“He had to really fight. At times they got one on him and at times he got one on them. He did really well.”
Toby Flood also had to be replaced early against France after injuring his Achilles. England expect him to be fit for the Scotland game a week on Saturday but they will take no risks with him in training this week.
Jonny Wilkinson is, therefore, set to be retained in camp and not released to play for Toulon in their key Top 14 game against Clermont Auvergne on Friday night.