Rugby Union: Elvis has elft the building
Injury-prone French backrow forward Elvis Vermeulen was ruled out of the rest of the Six Nations on Tuesday because of a broken rib
PARIS, February 5, 2008 - Injury-prone French backrow forward Elvis
Vermeulen was ruled out of the rest of the Six Nations on Tuesday because of a
The 28-year-old nine-times capped Clermont star - who missed the World Cup
because of a herniated disc injury - has been replaced by the uncapped No 8
Louis Picamoles of Montpellier.
Vermeulen suffered a blow to his thorax during Sunday's 27-6 win over
Scotland at Murrayfield, but initially declared himself fit for next
Saturday's clash with Ireland at the Stade de France.
However, after training with the rest of the squad on Tuesday he pulled up
with sore ribs and the immediate diagnosis was that he would be out for
between four to six weeks.
It represents a dream birthday present for Picamoles, who turned 22 on
Tuesday, and he will join up with two similarly young club-mates in another
backrow forward Fulgence Ouedraogo, aged just 21 with two caps, and fly-half
Francois Trinh-Duc, also 21 and who impressed in his debut against the Scots.
"I am finding it hard to get to grips with what has happened," Picamoles
"It is one of the most beautiful days of my life, and what's more it is my
"My team-mates will help me fit into the squad and as for starting the
match, I am just happy to savour being selected in the squad.
"The team made a real impression on me in the match against Scotland, and I
am very excited to be joining up with them."
Picamoles has impressed this season - especially in the 14-14 European
Challenge Cup draw with Sale and the 37-13 thrashing of Bayonne in which he
scored a try in both matches - and was close to being called up for the squad
for the Scotland clash.