Paul O’Connell’s international career is over after the Ireland captain tore his hamstring during Sunday’s World Cup victory over France.
The 35-year-old is moving to French side Toulon after the tournament having being released early from his dual Munster and Ireland contract.
Iain Henderson, who replaced O’Connell, is likely to start Sunday’s quarter-final game with Argentina in Cardiff.
Number eight Jamie Heaslip will lead the team in O’Connell’s absence.
«Paul O’Connell suffered a significant hamstring injury and will undergo surgery this week,» said an Irish Rugby statement.
«Paul will not play again at Rugby World Cup 2015 and his time out of the game will depend on the outcome of the surgery.»
The end of O’Connell’s involvement in the campaign follows Peter O’Mahony being ruled out with knee ligament damage. Flanker Sean O’Brien may also be missing for the match against the Pumas after he was cited for an apparent punch on France second row Pascal Pape.
Leinster’s Mike McCarthy has been called into the Ireland squad as O’Connell’s replacement.
O’Connell began his international career with a try-scoring debut against Wales in 2002 and has been a key member of the Ireland side since.
After playing a leadership role alongside captain Brian O’Driscoll in Ireland’s Six Nations Grand Slam in 2009, O’Connell captained the British and Irish Lions in their 2-1 Test series defeat by South Africa later that year.
England 2015 was O’Connell’s fourth World Cup campaign with Ireland. He has never been beyond the quarter-finals in the tournament.
He finishes his international career with 108 Ireland caps and another seven for the British and Irish Lions.