Croft gets call-up as injuries hit Lions

LEICESTER flanker Tom Croft was last night drafted into the British and Irish Lions squad for the tour of South Africa.<br /><br />England international Croft was called up after Ireland&rsquo;s Alan Quinlan had his appeal against a 12-week suspension for eye-gouging rejected.<br /><br />The development came after &nbsp;Ireland hooker Jerry Flannery was ruled out of the tour and Wales winger Leigh Halfpenny suffered an injury setback.<br /><br />Flannery tore ligaments in his elbow during training yesterday and, after a scan, it was decided he needed surgery, meaning he will miss the tour.<br /><br />Halfpenny is set to return to Cardiff &nbsp;tomorrow to have treatment on a thigh injury which team medics said was &ldquo;more significant than first thought&rdquo;. He will miss the start of the tour but it is hoped he will rejoin the squad later.<br /><br />Coach Ian McGeechan turned to Croft after Quinlan&rsquo;s ban, for an offence during Munster&rsquo;s Heineken Cup semi-final defeat to Leinster, was upheld yesterday evening.<br /><br />McGeechan said: &ldquo;We had to be fair and allow Alan Quinlan the opportunity to appeal his suspension. However, following the outcome of the appeal we&rsquo;ve replaced Quinlan with Tom Croft who was very unlucky not to have been selected in the original tour party.&rdquo;