Sport Rugby

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Murray trains to allay injury fears

Conor Murray Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Conor Murray Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Ruaidhri O'Connor

Ruaidhri O'Connor

Conor Murray trained fully yesterday and is set to be cleared to play against New Zealand on Saturday.

The scrum-half, Ireland's outstanding performer in their historic win over the All Blacks in Chicago last week, is struggling with a muscle injury and did not train on Monday.

He carried the problem into the Soldier Field victory, according to Richie Murphy, who explained that he hadn't practised his kicking before landing a penalty during the second half.

Murray sat out last weekend's win over Canada along with 14 of the other starters and is expected to go straight back into the starting XV this week.

Although Ireland's depth has been praised in recent weeks, they are thin at scrum-half where Kieran Marmion and Luke McGrath have eight caps between them.

However, the sight of the Munster star taking part in yesterday's training session at Carton House would have been a relief to Joe Schmidt who has no other injury concerns ahead of the third Test of his November schedule as Iain Henderson and Johnny Sexton also trained.

"He's a very accomplished goal-kicker but it was a one-off last week, that week, because he hadn't actually kicked during the week because he was carrying a little bit of a muscle... you know, so he hadn't actually kicked," skills and kicking coach Murphy said.

"For him to step up and knock one over was brilliant for us."

Schmidt names his team tomorrow with the major talking point who he will choose to wear the No 7 jersey with Jordi Murphy out injured. Seán O'Brien, Peter O'Mahony and Josh van der Flier are all battling for inclusion.

He is likely to recall Paddy Jackson to the bench, while Henderson and Keith Earls are all pushing for selection.

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport