Heineken Cup: Aurélien Rougerie injury scare for Clermont Auvergne
Last Updated: 22/04/14 3:57pm
Aurélien Rougerie: Hamstring problem
Clermont centre and skipper Aurélien Rougerie is an injury doubt for Saturday's Heineken Cup semi-final clash with Saracens at Twickenham.
The veteran France internationa suffered an inflamed hamstring following Les Jaunards disappointing 22-6 loss to Racing Mètro on Saturday.
The 33-year-old's participation in Saturday's semi-final is in doubt, the club have confirmed, with big-hitting Kiwi Benson Stanley likely to step into midfield if the captain misses out.
Hooker Benjamin Kayser said Rougerie will be sorely missed if he is unable to play.
"He's the team captain so obviously his influence is huge," said Kayser.
"As a player everybody can be replaced, anybody, because we have a fantastic squad.
"As a leader he is very important to the team, he's our flame, he's the type of back that likes to show the right mindset in the game.
"I don't think it's about the way he speaks or even how he influences the ref, I think it's about he puts his body on the line every weekend to show the pride in the jersey and to show the way forward, he leads by example.
"So that's why he's a very important captain and we all hope he's going to be fit for this weekend.
"Remember last year he was unfortunately ruled out for the semi-final (Clermont's 16-10 victory over Munster), Julien Bonnaire did a fantastic job as taking his place as captain, but he was obviously with us all week, with us before the game, with us at half-time and with us after the game.
"So it's as though he was on the pitch with us, and whatever happens this week I'm sure that's what he's going to do."
The 71-cap Rougerie was not the only Clermont player to suffer during Saturday's defeat.
Back-rows Fritz Lee and Damien Chouly may also be forced to sit out the game at Twickenham with knee and shoulder injuries respectively.
Last year's beaten finalists can, however, take solace in the returns of prop Davit Zirakashvili, flanker Gerhard Vosloo and second-row Jamie Cudmore to full training, while Ti'i Paulo and and Julien Bardy are making progress and could feature at Twickenham.