Scotland hooker Ross Ford was today announced by British & Irish Lions Tour Manager, Gerald Davies, as the tour replacement for the injured Irish hooker Jerry Flannery.
Davies said, "Munster hooker Jerry Flannery tore ligaments in his left elbow in training on Wednesday that unfortunately ruled him out of the tour. His place in the tour squad is taken by Edinburgh’s 25-year old hooker Ross Ford who played in all five of Scotland’s 2009 Six Nations championship matches."
Commenting on the replacement Head Coach Ian McGeechan said, "Jerry has had a terrific season and he anchored the Irish scrum during Ireland’s Six Nations Grand Slam season. It is disappointing that after selection for the Lions his season should end with a pre-tour injury."
"Injuries are a part of the game and while very distressing for the affected player we as a squad have to accept them as a fact of life. It is a part of the game we play. We are focussed on moving forward, concentrating on the task at hand and the first match."
"Ross is a terrific player and he will naturally slot straight in as hooker. I look forward to welcoming him into camp tonight," added McGeechan.
The replacement player for Leigh Halfpenny will be announced in due course.
Jerry Flannery was reviewed by an orthopaedic specialist yesterday (Thursday 21st May) who confirmed that surgery would be required. He will have this operation today (Friday 22nd May) and begin his rehabilitation immediately.
British & Irish Lions Head of Media, Greg Thomas +44 (0)7719 702 436