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Johnny Sexton 'Saddened And Shocked' By French Doctor's Comments

Johnny Sexton 'Saddened And Shocked' By French Doctor's Comments

Johnny Sexton is disappointed by comments made by Dr Jean-Francois Chermann in the French media this week.

Chermann, a neurologist, suggested that the Ireland captain has sustained "around 30 concussions" during his career. He was the doctor responsible for standing Sexton down from action for 12 weeks in 2014 while playing for Racing 92.

Sexton was replaced late in Ireland's defeat to Wales on Sunday when he left the field to undergo a head injury assessment. He is currently going through return to play protocols ahead of Sunday's game against France.

Chermann added that if Sexton shows concussion symptoms this week that he should not be allowed play.

"I'm saddened and shocked by the inaccurate reports that were thrown out [in France] yesterday," Sexton said during a press conference on Wednesday.

"It's very frustrating. For me, I just think that it's totally inappropriate that a doctor I have seen, many years ago now, felt it was appropriate to come out and talk to whoever it was and say those things. It's inaccurate and highly inappropriate.

"I'm pretty disappointed but I'm used to it. It's almost like water off a duck's back to me. For my wife and mum, it's very upsetting but that's the world we live in. I don't really want to talk too much more about it.

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"I thought there was patient-doctor confidentiality - I'm pretty sure that exists in the world. I just can't get over that someone thought it was appropriate to start saying things that weren't even accurate. That's the most hurtful thing.

"We've been here before. We could sit here talking about it for 20 minutes. I'm never going to win out of it because last time I did it - this happened twice before and I tried to give facts and defend myself and then I'm in the papers for being selfish and not looking after the younger players coming through the system, people accusing me of just looking after myself.

"I can't win, so I'm not talking about it for the rest of the press conference. You can talk about France or Wales."

Asked how he's feeling right now, Sexton said: "I'm OK.

"Obviously I picked up a few bangs, a few bumps and bruises but by and large I've been good at the start of the week. I'm just doing the return to play protocols at the moment.

"Today, if pass my test, I get to train with the group tomorrow, non-contact. Then you tick the box in terms of a bit of contact before the game. It's step-by-step.

"Hopefully, I'll only miss one session. I suppose that experience can help you. You can do mental prep and visualisation, watching training and running through things as if you were that out-half on the pitch. Obviously, it's not the same.

"The fact that I played on Saturday helps. That match sharpness will heopefully be there, having got through 65 minutes or whatever it was."

See Also: "They'd Gouge, Punch, Catch You By The Stones" - Memorable Moments From Ireland-France

quiz name ireland team beat france 2001 six nations

PJ Browne
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