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Munster concern over Keith Earls injury as Peter O’Mahony and Jean Kleyn doubtful for Zebre

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Keith Earls of Munster leaves the field during the United Rugby Championship match between Dragons and Munster at Rodney Parade in Newport, Wales. Photo: Ben Evans/Sportsfile

Keith Earls of Munster leaves the field during the United Rugby Championship match between Dragons and Munster at Rodney Parade in Newport, Wales. Photo: Ben Evans/Sportsfile

Keith Earls of Munster leaves the field during the United Rugby Championship match between Dragons and Munster at Rodney Parade in Newport, Wales. Photo: Ben Evans/Sportsfile

Munster will be without Keith Earls for this weekend’s meeting with Zebre after the winger damaged his hamstring in their defeat to Dragons on Sunday.

The Limerick native has been sent for scans on the muscle and the province and Andy Farrell will be crossing their fingers he hasn’t sustained serious damage.

Earls was replaced early on during his first game of the season and with Connacht, the Bulls, Leinster and Ulster to come before Ireland’s opening November fixture against South Africa on November 5 he’ll be desperate to see some game-time.

Captain Peter O’Mahony is expected to return to training later this week after sustaining an ankle injury in the same game, while Jean Kleyn is going through the return to play protocols after sustaining a concussion at Rodney Parade.

Both are doubts for the Musgrave Park meeting with Zebre, a game that has assumed must-win status for the province who have lost both of their games so far this season.

Rory Scannell is available once more which is a boost to coach Graham Rowntree who is down nine players who have gone on the Emerging Ireland tour to South Africa.

Centre Antoine Frisch is among that number, while Chris Farrell is being stood down until his legal proceedings in France have reached a conclusion.

Somewhat worryingly, star South African second-row RG Snyman remains sidelined amidst fears he’s suffered a set-back in his recovery from a second anterior cruciate ligament injury.

Gavin Coombes, Andrew Conway and Jack Daly are also out, while Alex Kendellen is also going through the return to play protocols after being ruled out of the Emerging Ireland tour.

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