Rugby

'I Managed To Do Two Tours With A File That Totalled One Page'

'I Managed To Do Two Tours With A File That Totalled One Page'

During his rugby career - considering how attritional the sport can be - Heaslip had a remarkably short list of ailments from which he suffered.

"My career is I've had three concussions, syndesmosis of the left ankle, broke my back, broke my finger, shattered left eye socket and that was kind of it," the recently retired Ireland back row told BBC 5 Live's Rugby Union Weekly podcast.

"Compared to other guys, I've come out relatively unscathed when you think of all the ACL and hip and shoulder surgeries that have gone on. I've avoided most of them."

That fractured eye socket actually happened when he was 17, further shortening the list of injuries which he sustained during his pro rugby career.

The host of the BBC podcast is ex-England international Ugo Monye. Heaslip and Moyne toured South Africa together as part of the 2009 Lions squad.

Moyne said that Heaslip was just one of two players who did not have to visit physio Phil Pask on that tour.

"I managed to do two [Lions] tours with a file that totalled one page, which was basically my name. The physios loved me because they didn't have to see me, which was funny," added Heaslip.

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Even in Leinster, it was kind of hilarious, that when I got injured, I actually got to know the physios then. I didn't really see them otherwise. I knew them, obviously, but you're not spending hours with them as you do when you're injured.

In the past, Heaslip has partially credited the briefness of his injury record to naturally high levels of testosterone. "The Wolverine blood kicked in," he said after recovering from a 2015 injury in time for a Champions Cup pool stage game.

"The other thing that always motivated me to stay on the field was all you need to do is give a guy and chance and he can put his hand up and take your spot. I was always just like, 'Keep playing. Keep training. Stay there'."

Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

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PJ Browne
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