The fallout from Ireland's Rugby World Cup exit has been tough to take. The injuries sustained during the tournament have ensured that we're under constant reminder of the toll the past month has taken. As things stand, we're heading into the Six Nations significantly depleted after the latest injury update form the provinces. Peter O'Mahony will miss Ireland's title defence and now we can definitively say the same of Tommy Bowe.
This weekend, Ulster coach Neil Doak managed to calm some of those fears by suggesting that Bowe was suffering with cartilage damage that would keep him out for around two months. That was about as good as we could have hoped for an we rejoiced that our luck was beginning to turn.
Unfortunately, that hasn't been the case. Bowe underwent surgery yesterday for a posterior cruciate ligament injury and initial fears have been realised.
Tommy sustained posterior cruciate ligament and meniscal injuries to his right knee during the Rugby World Cup quarter final against Argentina. He had successful surgery to repair the damage yesterday and he will be ruled out for at least six months.
Ulster have also confirmed that Iain Henderson will be out of action for around six weeks with a hand injury while Jared Payne's fractured foot was operated on this weekend and the province are awaiting a review before putting a time frame on his recovery.