PLYMOUTH Albion prop Christian Judge is disappointed an injury has forced him to pull out of the England Counties squad to play France Federale at Blackheath on Friday night.
Judge was hoping to win his second cap for the representative team, having made his debut last month against a Scotland Club XV.
However, a shoulder injury he picked up in Albion’s 24-17 win over Darlington Mowden Park has ruled him out of this week’s game.
“It’s very frustrating but it’s something that can’t be helped,” said Judge.
“My shoulder has been painful for the last few days, so, unfortunately, it just means I’m unavailable.
“Like I said, it’s very frustrating and disappointing because obviously I was looking forward to it, but, hopefully a week of recovery and looking after it will mean I will be okay for the rest of the season.”
Judge wants to try and make sure he is fit for Albion’s next match which is against third-placed Blackheath on March 19.
Blackheath are just one point above Albion in the table.
“That’s the main priority now that I am not available this week,” said Judge. “I just have to try and do everything I can do to be right for next week.”
Judge produced an impressive display against Darlington as Albion out-scrummed their hosts at the Northern Echo Arena.
“We scrummed well as an eight and that showed in the game,” said Judge. “We got a try off a scrum so that’s nice.”
Judge is not the only Albion player carry an injury.
Ollie Dawe and Ethan Ford had to come off with knocks against Darlington, while Dan Collier was pulled out before kick-off due to concerns over a head injury, while Herbie Stupple and Marc Koteczky have also picked up injuries.
Although Albion have a number of players receiving treatment, Dawe admits he would like to be playing again this Saturday, instead of having a weekend off after winning 12 of their last 13 matches.
“I’m a big believer in playing every weekend,” said Dawe. “It is frustrating that we haven’t got a game, but it is chance to watch international rugby, I guess.”