Six Nations 2014: England lose prop Dan Cole to neck injury

Six Nations 2014: England tight-head prop Dan Cole is set to miss the rest of the championship due to a neck injury

Stuart Lancaster admits losing Dan Cole for the remainder of the Six Nations is a blow after the England tight-head prop was ruled out with a neck injury.

The 26-year-old will have treatment to relieve a bulging disc in his neck, which was discovered to be trapping a nerve, after feeling discomfort during a gym session last week.

It’s massively disappointing for Dan, Leicester and England

Stuart Lancaster

England play Ireland on Saturday and Lancaster is left with David Wilson, just back from a calf injury, or the inexperienced Henry Thomas as replacement options.

The Leicester Tigers player will have further specialist assessment on Tuesday evening but Lancaster believes it is an opportunity for other players to step up in his absence.

“It’s massively disappointing for Dan, Leicester and England,” said Lancaster.

“But the important thing is that this has been diagnosed and that Dan gets the appropriate rest and treatment.

“Our medics are working closely with Leicester’s to come up with a programme that will ensure Dan returns in the best possible shape.

“In the meantime, it’s great to have David Wilson back, as well as Henry Thomas who has trained well and came off the bench against Scotland and this will be an opportunity to develop experience in this area.”

Cole made his international debut as a replacement for Wilson in the 30-17 victory over Wales in the 2010 Six Nations campaign.

The prop had started both of England’s Six Nations matches this year against France and Scotland, taking his total caps tally to 45.

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