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O'Connell blow for Ireland

01st January 2013 21:54

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Paul OConnell Ireland

Ruled out: Paul O'Connell

Ireland lock Paul O'Connell will miss the Six Nations after undergoing surgery to correct a bulging disc in his back.

However, O'Connell should be in contention for a spot in the British and Irish Lions squad to tour Australia starting in June, after targeting a return to action with Irish province Munster in April.

"In terms of a return, I'd be looking at early April when hopefully Munster will be in contention for trophies on two fronts (Heineken Cup and Pro12)," said the 33-year-old.

It is the third time in his career that O'Connell, the former Ireland and Lions captain, has had a disc problem in his lower back.

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