Stephen Ferris has dropped out of the Lions tour to South Africa. The robust and physical backrow forward suffered a ligament strain in his knee that will sideline him for up to 6 weeks.
It is a cruel blow to the Lions as Ferris was staking a claim for a Test spot, one of the backrow forwards who could match the 'Boks pack for physicality around the fringe defence as well as matching the disgustingly good Spies.
Wales Captain Ryan Jones has been drafted in as his replacement. At the top of his game Jones' can be a world class backrow player. He was instrumental to Wales's recent Grand Slam victories. However, his form this season has been poor and one wonders if he can regain any of it to challenge for a Test spot.
Add to this Leigh Halfpenny has also had a relapse of his thigh injury that delayed his arrival to South Africa. He is replaced for the match tomorrow by James Hook. If he fails to recover it is unlikely he will be replaced as Gordon D'Arcy has already joined the squad as back up or cover for RikiFlutey who is healthy enough for the bench against the Sharks.
EDIT - 10/06/09 - Halfpenny is heading home. Cruel blow for him, but personally I felt he was unlikely to make the Test team. No replacement will be sought as guessed by AlmostDailySports last night.