Johnny Sexton Hits Back At French Doctor Who Claims He Has Suffered 30 Concussions In His Career

Shocked and saddened.

Ireland captain Johnny Sexton has fired back at what he calls “inaccurate reports” from his former neurologist in France.

Dr Jean-François Cherman, who treated Seton during his stint with Racing 92 in France, told RMC sport this week that the 35-year-old had suffered around 30 concussions in his career.

Dr Chermann is the man who stood down Sexton from playing for three months in 2014 following a number of concussion-related injuries but Sexton has hit back at his claims.

The Ireland outhalf said he is “saddened and shocked” by the reports that have been “thrown out” by the doctor.

“I’m pretty saddened and shocked by the inaccurate reports that were thrown out yesterday, I think it was,” said Sexton.

“We’ve been here before and it is very frustrating and, for me, totally inappropriate that someone I had seen 10 years ago now felt it appropriate to come out and talk to whoever it was and say those things.

“I’m pretty disappointed but for me, I am so used to it that it’s almost water off a duck’s back for me but for my wife and mum it’s very upsetting, but that’s the world we live in.

“I don’t want to talk too much more about it. I just want to focus on this week and the rtp (return to play protocols) and all that.

“If I pass and I’m fit to play then it’s up to the coaches then. That’s the way we’ve always done it and the guys here look after us very well.”

Sexton feels his rights have been taken from him following the reports.

“I thought there was patient-doctor confidentiality,” Sexton added.

“I’m pretty sure that exists in the world and I just can’t get over the fact that someone thought it was appropriate to say things that weren’t even accurate.

“That’s the most hurtful thing. Like I said, I’ve ‘released a statement’ and that’s all I have to say on the matter.

“We have been here before and we could sit here and talk about it for 20 minutes but I’m never going to win out because the last time I did it I tried to give the facts and defend myself and I was in the papers for being selfish and all that to the younger players coming through the system and people accusing me of just looking after myself.

“So I can’t win so I’m just not going to talk about it for the rest of the press conference if that’s okay. I just want to focus on France or we can talk about Wales, with the greatest of respect to you guys.

“You get used to it, it seems to be always the French game, but it is what it is. You get used to dealing with these type of things when you’re captain of your country.

“It’s a privileged position to be in and a lot of people would swap jobs, and I have to try and enjoy it. That’s what I have to do despite all the special attention.

“If I pass the tests today I get to train with the group tomorrow and do a bit of contact before the game on Friday or Saturday, so step by step.

“Hopefully I’ll have only missed one session and your experience can help you. A lot of that you can do – mental preparation an visualisation and preparing – by watching training, running through things in your head as if you are the on the pitch.

“The fact I played on Saturday helps, that match sharpness will hopefully be there having got through 65 mins or whatever it was.”

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