England optimistic Moody ok for cup

by Staff Writer

England coach Martin Johnson believes Lewis Moody is still on course to play at next month's World Cup in New Zealand despite suffering a knee injury last weekend.

The England captain limped off in the second half of England's 23-19 warm-up win over Wales at Twickenham on Saturday with a recurrence of the knee ligament problem that meant the back-row missed the whole of this season's Six Nations title-winning campaign.

Moody has since had his knee scanned and the results are due back on Tuesday.

Johnson, speaking to reporters on Monday, was cautiously optimistic, saying: "The bad news would be that he has got an eight week injury that would put him out of the World Cup.

"I don't think it is going to put him out of the tournament, but we'll see," added Johnson, England's 2003 World Cup-winning captain and a former Leicester team-mate of Moody.

"It is not great that he has got an injury, but I don't think it is on the very bad side of knee injuries."

England, bidding to appear in a third straight World Cup final after losing to South Africa in Paris four years ago, continue their warm-up campaign with a return fixture against Wales in Cardiff this coming Saturday.

They conclude their preparations against Ireland in Dublin on August 27.

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