O'Driscoll ruled out of Thomond duel with Munster
IReland captain Brian O'Driscoll has been ruled out of Friday's Magners League derby while his Munster counterpart Paul O'Connell was sent home from his side's training camp yesterday after picking up a stomach bug.
O'Driscoll must now be rated a major doubt for his side's Heineken Cup quarter-final with Clermont on April 9.
On a happier note, injured duo Gordon D'Arcy and Nathan Hines were included in the extended Leinster squad released yesterday, which also contains returning Ireland duo Cian Healy and Jamie Heaslip.
All of Munster's front-line Ireland internationals who were rested for last Friday's win against Glasgow will return, along with hooker Jerry Flannery, who returns from suspension.
"We had a bit of a stomach bug in the camp last night and sent three players out of the camp straight away," said Munster coach Tony McGahan from the team's Tipperary base at the Ballykisteen Hotel.
"Deccy Cusack and Barry Murphy also had the bug so we'll just wait and see how it transpires. We usually give 24 or 48 hours for these things so we'll get a clearer picture once it dies down a bit, and then see how it works out."
O'Connell didn't make the starting line-up for the early-season 30-0 humiliation of his side by Leinster at the RDS although, unlike on that occasion, the rest of the province's front-line stars will start this Friday's sold-out encounter at Thomond Park.
David Wallace, Tomas O'Leary, Keith Earls and Flannery all return but Denis Hurley is ruled out with a hamstring injury, although he should be available for next weekend's Heineken Cup quarter-final with Northampton.