The Munster squad gathered in Cork today for their first squad session of the week as the preparations for next Saturday’s GUINNESS PRO12 game against Zebre continued.
In advancing with their rehabilitation programmes, Keith Earls and James Cronin both took part in training today in varying capacities, and if reporting no ill-effects tomorrow the pair will continue to step up their preparations again on Thursday.
Commenting on the progress, assistant coach Ian Costello said: “It’s good to see a couple of the lads back in training today, in particular Keith Earls who did part of the session.
“The key thing will be to see how he responds to that so he’ll be assessed in the morning. It’s an ongoing part of the management of his rehab – if he goes well we’ll progress it more later in the week.
“The other was James Cronin. Same situation in some ways – he did a little bit of contact and then did a percentage of the session. As part of his rehab management he didn’t do the full thing, but they are two big figures within the squad who could potentially get back within the next couple of weeks.”
Following on from last week’s Connacht clash, Duncan Casey, who was replaced at half-time in that match, required a scan on his shoulder and the Munster management team are now waiting on the full medical report.
It has been confirmed that Cathal Sheridan will remain sidelined for the next number of weeks as he continues to manage a forearm injury sustained during the November encounter with the Dragons.
Robin Copeland, who sustained a shoulder injury in the recent Leinster game, underwent a scan last week and will meet with the specialist this week for further assessment.
Dave Kilcoyne, who is three weeks into his rehabilitation programme, is progressing well with his knee injury and will meet with the specialist later this week for his ongoing assessment.
Similarly, Andrew Smith continues to rehab his short-term knee injury following surgery last month, and Donnacha Ryan (toe) has advanced to on-field running for now.
The following players are continuing with their rehabilitation programmes: Luke O’Dea (hand), Mike Sherry (shoulder), Damien Varley (foot), Johnny Holland (hamstring), Alan Cotter (bicep), Barry O’Mahony (ankle), Cian Bohane (knee) and Gerhard van den Heever (knee).