Thursday 18 January 2018

Connacht awaiting crucial scan on Robbie Henshaw ahead of pivotal Challege Cup clash

Robbie Henshaw. Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE
Robbie Henshaw. Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE

John Fallon

Connacht coach Pat Lam will have to wait until Friday to see if Robbie Henshaw will be fit to make a return to action in their critical round six Challenge Cup meeting with Enisei-STM at the Sportsground.

Henshaw has missed Connacht's last seven games after he sustained a fractured bone in his hand during the province's historic win over Munster in Thomond Park last November, but looks to be on the verge of a return to the team. The Irish international will have to be given the go-ahead to play by a specialist on the eve of the game, but Lam is hopeful he will be fit to play.

“Robbie Henshaw is available, pending a sign off on Friday. He should be available to play, but we have to wait till Friday to see the scan results,” said Lam.

Connacht need a bonus point win to be in with any hope of topping Pool 1 after they slipped up away to Brive last week, losing out to a last minute penalty on a 21-18 scoreline.

Their hopes of victory have been boosted by the availability of scrum-half Kieran Marmion, who has recovered from a hip injury, but Lam confirmed that full-back Darragh Leader faces a long stretch on the sidelines.

Leader, who was playing his first game in seven weeks because of a similar injury, injured his wrist in action of the Connacht Eagles against Doncaster in the B&I Cup last weekend. He will undergo surgery tomorrow and is now expected to miss the rest of the season.

Jason Harris Wright (concussion), Craig Ronaldson (shoulder) and Eoin McKeon (hip) are also out of Saturday's Challenge Cup game with the Russian side, who now have two wins to their name from their maiden season of European rugby after their victory over Newcastle last weekend.

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