SCOTLAND loosehead prop Rory Sutherland appears likely to be ruled out of the rest of the Six Nations Championship after suffering a suspected broken rib in the defeat by Wales last Saturday.

The Worcester Warriors player came on shortly after the start of the second half in Cardiff, but lasted only eight minutes before sustaining the injury. 

Worcester director of rugby Steve Diamond told reporters earlier today that he expected the star to be out for four to six weeks.

Further scans will determine whether a rib has indeed been fractured, but even if his prognosis improves a little, the defender is unlikely to have the time to regain match fitness before Scotland’s final game of the campaign against Ireland in Dublin on 19 March.  

The national team is not expected to say anything official about Sutherland until they announce who is replacing him in the squad for the home game against France a week on Saturday.

It is still unclear whether Glasgow loosehead Jamie Bhatti will be fit to face the French after missing the first two rounds of the Championship with a hand injury.

Allan Dell of London Irish was called into the squad when Bhatti was ruled out, but has so far not been in either matchday 23.

If both players are out of the France game, Glasgow’s Oli Kebble will be the frontrunner to come in as a replacement, with Edinburgh’s Pierre Schoeman a certain starter. 

Scotland are also expected to wait until the weekend before giving an update on Matt Fagerson.

The Glasgow Warriors No 8 had to go off last Saturday with what head coach Gregor Townsend called a bang on the foot.

Townsend said after the game that he was hopeful Fagerson would be passed fit again very quickly.