O'Connell fears grow
FEARS are growing that Munster captain Paul O'Connell could be ruled out of Ireland's summer tour to New Zealand but the province have been boosted by Ronan O'Gara's return to training ahead of Friday night's Pro12 semi-final clash with the Ospreys, writes hugh farrelly.
O'Connell has not been officially ruled out of Munster's trip to the Liberty Stadium but there are increasing fears that he has done serious damage to his knee and may not play again this season.
The second-row is due to see a specialist this week after Munster coach Tony McGahan confirmed that O'Connell twisted his knee in last weekend's Pro12 win over Ulster as opposed to the infection in the same knee which ruled him out of the Six Nations participation following the draw with France.
However, O'Gara is set to give McGahan and Ireland coach Declan Kidney a timely boost with a likely return against the Ospreys in his first game since the Heineken Cup quarter-final loss to Ulster.
Meanwhile, Leinster say winger Luke Fitzgerald will undergo surgery "sometime in the next fortnight" on his neck/shoulder injury and admit there are no clear indications as to how long the winger will be sidelined.