Warburton back in action

Tue, 24 Sep 2013 17:44
Large sam warburton celebrates Large sam warburton injured Large sam warburton in stands

B&I Lions skipper Sam Warburton will return to action well ahead of schedule for Cardiff Blues’ match against Leinster on Friday.

British and Irish Lions skipper Sam Warburton will return to action well ahead of schedule for Cardiff Blues’ match against defending Pro12 champions Leinster on Friday.

The Wales flank suffered a torn hamstring in the second Test against Australia in Melbourne, an injury which kept him out of the deciding fixture with the Wallabies.

An early recovery period of between 12 and 16 weeks was the initial prediction but with Warburton returning for this weekend's trip to Leinster, the 24-year-old is well ahead of schedule.

After the Blues' disappointing defeat to Zebre last Friday, Warburton's return is the perfect tonic for boss Phil Davies as he prepares his side for a visit to last year's champions.

"We've got Sam Warburton back in the team starting and we've made a few changes," Davies confirmed.

"Some are through injury, some through necessity but it's a great challenge for us playing the champions at their home ground.

"If you can't look forward to that as a rugby player, there's something wrong with you."

The Blues have a poor record in Dublin and were comfortably beaten by Leinster at the RDS last season. But with Warburton and fellow Lions Leigh Halfpenny and Alex Cuthbert all set to start, Davies has a near full strength side available. Wales wing Harry Robinson is also set to return.

"Sam wanted to play. He himself has done a phenomenal job, as have the medical department," Davies added.

"He's five weeks ahead of schedule and that's down to his diligence. He was knocking the door down to play which is fantastic. It's really exciting.

"It says a lot about our medical department. Sam is one of the most professional players you'll ever wish to meet. It's down to him and the doctors who have been working on him.

"We've got an anti-gravity treadmill and I know that's helped his cardio vascular fitness."

A trip to Leinster is not going to be an easy task, especially following the Blues' result against Zebre. Davies though, argues his side have put the defeat behind them.

He said: "We came in on Monday and all of us made our feelings know.

"We're striving to be successful but sometimes setbacks drive teams forwards and that's what we're doing this week.

"We've trained very well and built on the work as well as looking at where we can improve for a pretty uncompromising fixture this weekend."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 15 December 2017
Ulster v Harlequins 19h45 Kingspan Stadium
Sat, 16 December 2017
Montpellier v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Altrad Stadium
Treviso v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Leinster v Exeter Chiefs 15h15 Aviva Stadium
Racing Metro v Castres 15h15 Stade Yves-du-Manoir
Bath v Toulon 17h30 Recreation Ground
Sun, 17 December 2017
Wasps v La Rochelle 13h00 Ricoh Arena
Clermont Auvergne v Saracens 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Ospreys v Northampton Saints 15h15 Liberty Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Munster 17h30 Welford Road
RESULT SCORE
Mon, 11 December 2017
Saracens v Clermont Auvergne 14 | 46
Sun, 10 December 2017
Exeter Chiefs v Leinster 8 | 18
Harlequins v Ulster 5 | 17
La Rochelle v Wasps 49 | 29
Sat, 09 December 2017
Munster v Leicester Tigers 33 | 10
Castres v Racing Metro 16 | 13
Northampton Saints v Ospreys 32 | 43
Toulon v Bath 24 | 20
Scarlets v Treviso 33 | 28
Fri, 08 December 2017
Glasgow Warriors v Montpellier 22 | 29
Sun, 03 December 2017
Harlequins v Saracens 20 | 19
Sat, 02 December 2017
Cheetahs v Scarlets 28 | 21
Munster v Ospreys 36 | 10
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 32 | 25
Treviso v Leinster 10 | 36
PRO14
MORE LOGS
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 10 10 0 0 48
Munster 10 7 0 3 36
Cheetahs 10 6 0 4 29
Cardiff Blues 10 4 0 6 19
Connacht 10 3 0 7 18
Zebre 10 3 0 7 16
Ospreys 10 2 0 8 11
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Scarlets 10 8 0 2 40
Leinster 10 8 0 2 37
Ulster 10 7 1 2 35
Edinburgh 10 6 0 4 28
Treviso 10 3 0 7 15
Dragons 10 2 1 7 13
Kings 10 0 0 10 4