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Surgery shouldn’t rule Tiger Roll out of 2020 Grand National

Two-time Grand National winner Tiger Roll will undergo surgery on Friday in order to remedy a small chip in a joint and it is anticipated that he won’t return to action until February at the earliest, Gigginstown racing manager Eddie O’Leary stating that the best hoped-for outcome will be an appearance at the Boyne Hurdle at Navan. Failing that, Tiger Roll will likely appear next at the 2020 Cheltenham Festival.

O’Leary said: “He has a small chip in a joint and he is going to have it taken out on Friday. It will rule him out of Christmas and we hope to make the Boyne Hurdle at Navan in February. If not, it will be straight to Cheltenham.”

Indeed connections of the nine-year-old are confident that he will make a return to action in the Boyne Hurdle, a race in which he triumphed last season.

Tiger Roll became the first horse to win the Grand National in consecutive seasons since the legendary Red Rum in 1973-74. Trainer Gordon Elliott has confirmed that his runner would be looking for a hat-trick of wins on April 4th 2020 although O’Leary is remaining tight-lipped with regard to the long-term plans and is keen just to get him through the current situation.

Elliott said: “It is obviously not ideal and I would have preferred if it didn’t happen, but I would hope to have him back for the Boyne Hurdle and then on to Cheltenham all being well. That is what we are hoping for.”