Hartley to miss Tigers semi-final
May 14, 2014
Dylan Hartley is back in training but will not play against Leicester © Getty Images
Northampton Saints will be without hooker Dylan Hartley for their Aviva Premiership semi-final against Leicester on Friday evening.
Hartley has been out of action since March after fracturing his shoulder against the Tigers but was reportedly in the frame for Friday's game. But with the England tour to New Zealand on the horizon, Hartley has been warned against rushing his comeback from injury.
"I was hoping to play this week so my comeback is a matter of days," Hartley told the Guardian. "There is no point in coming back too early with big games hopefully ahead. We have booked one final and we will know this weekend whether we have another one. Further down the line is the England tour.
"I am progressing day by day. The medics said six to eight weeks when I suffered the injury and we are at six weeks, which is why I always said I was going to try to play this week. The decision about when I do play will be clear-cut and it involves the club and England: it is not a case of one side telling me to play and the other not to. There is a risk that if I come back too soon I could dislocate the shoulder making my first tackle and I still have to take contact on it."
Stuart Lancaster will be monitoring Hartley's return closely with England facing a growing crisis at hooker. Tom Youngs will miss the tour to New Zealand due to personal reasons while Rob Webber and David Paice are both injury doubts.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
All Blacks veteran Dan Carter has confirmed the worst kept secret in rugby and revealed he will join Top 14 club Racing Metro after next year's World Cup
Former Wallabies skipper James Horwill will join Aviva Premiership club Harlequins on a three-year deal after Rugby World Cup 2015
Track coach Jon Drummond received an eight-year doping ban after arbitrators found he possessed, trafficked, administered and assisted in the use and cover-up of banned substances
Liverpool have been pitched against Chelsea in the two-legged semi-finals of the League Cup
Anthony Crolla's trainer says the boxer's career could be over after an attack left him with a fractured skull