12 Dec, 14:42
Prop Cian Healy is expected to miss the start of the 2014 RBS 6 Nations after undergoing surgery on his injured ankle on Wednesday.
Munster welcomed Marcus Horan, Anthony Foley, Mick O'Driscoll and Anthony Horgan back to training yesterday. Coach Declan Kidney admitted their return is timely given the schedule of games ahead.
Meanwhile flanker Alan Quinlan will find out today is his appeal against a six week suspension will be upheld or not. Quinlan missed the festive Magners League derbies and would miss Munster's crucial Heineken Cup matches if the suspension is upheld.
The arm injury to David Humphreys, while not as serious as first thought, will still see him out for a number of weeks. This leaves the door open for Paddy Wallace to get some serious game time in the number 10 jersey. Humphreys, in his last professional season, is expected to be out until mid February.
Connacht have lost David Gannon and John Muldoon to injury. Both are expected to be out for at least four weeks. More seriously centre Keith Matthews is ruled out for the rest of the season after sustaining ligament damage in the game with Munster on New Year's Eve.
Finally Leinster are happy that Felipe Contepomi and Will Green came through the Last Stand against Ulster unscathed and while Ronan McCormack went off with a "stinger" he is expected to be fit. Their big concern is Girvan Dempsey, while both Luke Fitzgerald and Trevor Hogan could be fit for Magners League action.