Ireland camp assessing injuries ahead of South Africa

Jack Conan, Tommy O’Donnell and Dan Leavy are carrying knocks ahead of Saturday

Jonathan Sexton and Devin Toner in the Ireland huddle ahead of training on Tuesday. Photo: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Jonathan Sexton and Devin Toner in the Ireland huddle ahead of training on Tuesday. Photo: Billy Stickland/Inpho

 

Joe Schmidt and his team are already managing several injuries picked up by players this week, although none of them are said to be serious.

Leinster number 8 Jack Conan and flankers Tommy O’Donnell and Dan Leavy are all being assessed after a combination of a weekend of competitive rugby with their province and a training session at Carton House on Monday.

Munster flanker O’Donnell is due to have a scan on Tuesday after hurting his shoulder in camp.

“Jack Conan sat out training. He just had a heavy workload. We’re going to manage him today,” said Irish forwards coach Simon Easterby.

“Tommy O’Donnell picked up a bit of a shoulder bump yesterday at training so he is due to have a scan today.

“Dan Leavy just had a little bit of tightness in his hamstring. He obviously played at the weekend and is a little bit tight on his right side, also a few niggles on that side with his foot. Again we’re just managing his workload at the moment.”

Easterby looked towards the game against South Africa at the weekend as a chance to see some new combinations and, with injuries to Ulster’s Jared Payne and Leinster centre Garry Ringrose, the 13 position may be one of those.

The former Irish flanker also said players now have to be able to play in multiple positions to be fit for purpose for the modern game.

“The game is going that way in terms of having guys that can adapt. The Australia game, Keith Earls played in four positions in one game, I think,” said Easterby.

“You have to be able to adapt. Probably the only positions (that are specialist) are the nine and the frontrow. Everybody else has to be interchangeable.

“Locks have to go into the backrow and backrows might have to push up to the lock position if there is a sinbinning. I think that is part of the game now, adapting to circumstances on the pitch.”

Easterby added that there was no real concern about the three named players.

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