Rob Kearney has not had a nice time of it in the last year. Beset with back and knee injuries, Kearney looked like he was getting back to his best early this season - before another knee injury struck him down in Glasgow.
It doesn't look like it will be another serious injury for the Louth full-back, but it's the latest niggling injury that will see him miss time. Kearney thinks that Glasgow's new artificial pitch in Scotstoun may have had something to do with it:
That astro pitch, I’m not sure. It might take a few more victims in its time, it took another four at the weekend. It was just impact. There was no-one around me, my knee hit the ground.
When you look at the stats, Leinster did lose a number of players to injury, and with the growing trend of artificial pitches creeping into rugby - a lot of players who are new to the surface end up with some injuries.
I don’t know enough about the science in it. There is going to be more and more of it, definitely. If it’s the right sort of pitch, it’s the way forward.
It makes the spectacle better. Your skills are better, instead of plodding around on a mucky field when you can’t move your feet. But the balance to it is making sure they’re playable. Underneath it’s just concrete, and then they put the astroturf on it.
Even if clean and smooth artificial pitches make the game better to watch, but at the cost of injuries - then we can't persist with it surely? If the only positive is about what it does for the game, then why not play the sport in better weather. There's a reason rugby league is played in the summer.