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Whiplash sees North miss out

WALES and Scarlets wing George North (right) has been ruled out of this weekend's crucial Heineken Cup clash with Leinster.

X-rays have revealed that North suffered a soft-tissue double whiplash injury in the second half of his side's defeat by Ulster and coach Simon Easterby is unlikely to risk him. "There are things more important than playing, like being able to walk," Easterby said.

He is expected to be fit in time for Wales opening Six Nations game with Ireland on February 2.

Meanwhile, Ulster centre Luke Marshall will be out of action for 4-6 weeks with a fractured finger. Full- back Adam D'Arcy has fractured his ankle and will see a specialist to ascertain the exact damage done.