Ulster wing Tommy Bowe ruled out for four to six weeks by groin injury

Ulster wing Tommy Bowe will be out of action for at least four weeks because of a groin injury.

A scan on Tuesday revealed that Bowe had suffered the muscle tear during Ireland's recent autumn internationals.

Bowe has been plagued by injuries in recent times and missed the start of this season because of a wrist problem.

The 29-year-old Monaghan man sustained the wrist damage on the Lions tour in the summer and missed much of last season with a serious knee injury.

Bowe sustained that injury in Ulster's Heineken Cup defeat by Northampton last December and only returned to action late in the season.

The knee injury came eight months after he was ruled out of his then-club the Ospreys' closing games of 2011-12 because of a kidney haematoma.

The resulting surgery also forced Bowe out of Ireland's 2012 summer tour of New Zealand.

With Ulster's statement saying that Bowe's latest injury will keep him out for between "four and six weeks", the wing should be available for Ireland's Six Nations campaign which starts against Scotland on 2 February.

First up, Bowe will miss the back-to-back Heineken Cup games against Treviso in addition to the Pro12 contests over the Christmas period against Zebre and Leinster.

If Bowe does return in four weeks, he could be fit for the Pro12 game against Munster on 3 January.