By Adam Ellis
Leicester Tigers fullback Telusa Veainu will undergo surgery this week on a double fracture sustained to his jaw during the defeat to Munster at Thomond Park on Saturday.
Head coach Matt O’Connor confirmed the news was as bad as initially feared as Veainu was taken off after colliding with Andrew Conway early in the second half, as Munster ran in three tries to Leicester’s one in a 33-10 victory.
“It is very disappointing,” O’Connor admitted. “I said immediately after the game there is a duty of care for the ball carrier and Telusa has been seriously injured after a collision with an opposition’s shoulder and head which will make him miss a key part of the season.
“We look forward to his full recovery and getting him back on the field in due course.”
The defeat means Tigers require a bonus-point victory over Munster when Johan van Graan’s side cross the Irish Sea to play the return Pool 4 tie at Welford Road to keep their Champions Cup campaign alive.
Talk of the imminent return to fitness of back line stars Manu Tuilagi and Matt Toomua continues to simmer, with hooker Tom Youngs commenting from inside the camp, “those guys are there or thereabouts but it is up to Matt O’Connor and the physios to make the calls.”
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