Tommy O’Donnell, who won his first two Ireland senior caps in June, could be out for up to three months after sustaining a serious knee injury.
Munster have issued an injury update following their second successive bonus point win in the RaboDirect PRO12, a 43-21 comeback victory away to Zebre.
Back rower Tommy O’Donnell made his first start of the new season in that match, playing for 67 minutes before he was replaced at openside flanker by Niall Ronan.
The prognosis for the Tipperary man is not positive though with initial reports suggesting O’Donnell could be out for 10 to 12 weeks. He flew home from Italy for a scan on his injured knee and is due to see a specialist later this week.
It is a cruel blow for the 26-year-old who made his Test debut for Ireland as a replacement during the summer tour win over the USA in June. A week later, he started and scored a try in the 40-14 win over Canada.
There is better news for another player from that tour squad, full-back Felix Jones. He underwent shoulder surgery at the start of July and following a meeting with his specialist on Monday, Jones was declared fit to return to some controlled contact training this week.
The plan is for the Dubliner, who signed on for a further two seasons with Munster in February, to return to full training next week if all goes well.
Meanwhile, Munster second row Ian Nagle, who suffered strained tendons under his foot during the Zebre game, is currently undergoing rehabilitation and could return in two weeks.
The province’s new winger Andrew Conway is back in light training this week following the groin strain he sustained against the Italians.
The Munster squad will be announced tomorrow for their RaboDirect PRO12 clash with Benetton Treviso at Stadio di Monigo on Friday (kick-off 8.30pm local time/7.30pm Irish time).