James Cannon is the only fresh injury concern for Connacht after picking up a shoulder injury against Munster. James Connolly and Cian Kelleher have both returned to training this week, ahead of Saturday’s Challenge Cup trip to Worcester.
In the latest update from Connacht’s medical team, Denis Buckley is rehabilitating from ankle surgery last week and will be out of action until February. JP Cooney is recovering from recent hamstring surgery and will be out of action until April.
Pat O’Toole is continuing his rehabilitation for his hamstring injury under the supervision of the province’s medical and performance teams, while it has been confirmed that second row James Cannon sustained a shoulder injury against Munster and will be out of action for a number of weeks.
Connacht forwards coach Jimmy Duffy said: “It is not majorly serious, but James took a bang to the shoulder. We are just going to monitor him and look after him for the next couple of weeks. Fingers crossed he’ll be okay.
“Everyone that is not on that injury list is vying for selection and everyone is pushing hard. We have got some depth now and some bodies returning, which is good. It gives us some options.”
Andrew Browne has stepped up his rehabilitation from his Achilles injury and will return to action in mid-January. There is further positive news as Eoin McKeon is progressing well in his rehabilitation from a calf injury and will be out of action until the end of January.
James Connolly will integrate fully into team training this week following his recent calf injury, Sean O’Brien is recovering following shoulder surgery and will return to team training in late January, and Jake Heenan is continuing his rehabilitation from shoulder surgery and will be out of action until April.
Of the westerners’ sidelined backs, Steve Crosbie will be out of action until the end of January with a knee injury, while Cian Kelleher will integrate fully into team training this week following his recent head injury.
Cormac Brennan, who gradated to the senior squad this season, is progressing well in the final stages of his rehabilitation from shoulder surgery and will return to team training in February.