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Worries ease over Murray injury

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Ireland scrum-half Conor Murray holds his knee before being stretchered off during the second half. RBS Six Nations Rugby Championship, France v Ireland, Stade de France, Paris, France.

Ireland scrum-half Conor Murray holds his knee before being stretchered off during the second half. RBS Six Nations Rugby Championship, France v Ireland, Stade de France, Paris, France.

Ireland scrum-half Conor Murray holds his knee before being stretchered off during the second half. RBS Six Nations Rugby Championship, France v Ireland, Stade de France, Paris, France.

CONOR MURRAY is a major doubt for Saturday's clash with Scotland after the Ireland scrum-half hurt his knee in yesterday's 17-17 draw with France in Paris, but the injury shouldn't be a long-term worry.

"There's nothing definite yet," said Kidney, "but he probably hyper extended his knee, so the first indications are not as bad as they might have looked on TV. The main ligaments appear to be okay, but it's going to take a day or two to settle down."

There were no other major injury worries for Ireland beyond "bumps and bruises," but while Kidney was proud of Ireland's best performance in Paris since they won here in 2000, he could not mask his disappointment at being unable to turn a 17-6 half-time lead into a famous victory.

"If you're not disappointed when you don't win you shouldn't be in the job," he said. "The lads put in a huge effort and, as I said to them afterwards, I was proud of them. I couldn't be asking any more."

A penalty count of 11-4 in France's favour left Irish supporters highly critical of referee Dave Pearson, but Kidney said Ireland have to look at the things within their control.

"It's hard to hold field position if the turnovers are going against you in that way," he said. "That's an area we'll have to look at to see how we can force more turnovers."

France coach Philippe Saint-Andre praised the Irish defence, while regretting the lost opportunity of a Grand Slam tilt: "The state of mind in our dressing-room was not of fighting back for a draw, it was the state of mind that goes with losing a game."

Irish Independent