Leinster sound positive note on injuries


Rugby:The new year continues to look good for Leinster on the injury front as head coach Joe Schmidt continues to welcome back some of his most experienced senior players ahead of the vital final two rounds of the Heineken Cup pool stages.

The Leinster squad trained in UCD on Monday afternoon ahead of Friday night’s trip to face Edinburgh in Murrayfield in the RaboDirect Pro12 with a number of internationals expected to return to the fray.

Schmidt is hopeful that long-term absentees Brian O'Driscoll, Rob Kearney and Luke Fitzgerald will be in contention for Friday’s game as they make positive strides in their respective rehabilitation programmes.

International hooker Richardt Strauss is expected to return to the fray over the coming weeks and Shane Jennings, who was a late withdrawal from Saturday’s victory over Connacht due to illness, is expected to return.

Andrew Conway received a dead leg when competing for a ball in the air on Saturday but is expected be fit to train during the week.

Cian Healy, Jamie Heaslip, Seán O'Brien and Jonathan Sexton may return after being unavailable last weekend, while Kevin McLaughlin is expected to be involved after recovering from a shoulder knock against Ulster the previous weekend.

Isa Nacewa is also set to return either this week or next after suffering deep tissue bruising to his arm in the recent Heineken Cup clash against Clermont Auvergne at the Aviva Stadium.

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