Halfpenny heads home
Wales winger aggravates thigh injury
Last Updated: 10/06/09 10:25am
Halfpenny: Heading home
Leigh Halfpenny is to return home after a reoccurrence of a thigh injury ruled him out of the rest of the British and Irish Lions tour.
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"I am especially disappointed for Leigh as he worked so hard to come back from the set back at the start of the Tour but he has proven his strength of character by the way that he is handling the news and we wish him a quick recovery."
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The Wales winger was a late arrival on the tour, having remained in Cardiff to receive treatment on the problem.
After joining the tour, Halfpenny played against the Cheetahs on Saturday and was due to be on the bench to take on the Sharks on Wednesday.
However the 20-year-old aggravated the same injury in his thigh after opting to stay on for extra training on Monday.
Halfpenny was initially just pulled out of the squad to face the Sharks in Durban, but a scan has shown the injury is worse than expected.
The Lions, who already have Gordon D'Arcy as part of the squad as cover, will not be calling up a replacement for Halfpenny.
Coach Ian McGeechan said: "Leigh unfortunately hurt his right thigh muscle during Monday afternoon's training, following a medical assessment it was decided that he should undergo a scan to determine the extent of the injury.
"He had the scan on Tuesday morning that confirmed a presence of a further muscle injury to his right thigh which will require three to four weeks of rehabilitation which means he will miss the rest of the tour.
"I am especially disappointed for Leigh as he worked so hard to come back from the set back at the start of the Tour but he has proven his strength of character by the way that he is handling the news and we wish him a quick recovery.
"Leigh will travel with us to Cape Town and then return to the UK to continue his rehabilitation with the Cardiff Blues. We will not be replacing Leigh as we have enough cover for his position amongst the group of players that we have."
The injury is the latest blow for the Lions, who have already seen in-form Irish flanker Stephen Ferris ruled out of the tour.