Connacht captain John Muldoon suffered a broken arm in his side’s defeat to Harlequins on the weekend, ruling him out of the festive period fixtures.
Muldoon who has only played in four of Connacht’s nine Magners League games so far this season, picked up the injury in the dying stages of the match at the Sportsground.
The injury is to the same arm which he also broke in the summer whilst on duty for Ireland in New Zealand.
The 28-year-old will now miss the ties against Munster, Leinster and the Newport Gwent Dragons and is another casualty on Eric Elwood’s troubling injury list.
The Connacht coach is already without Ray Ofisa, Johnny O’Connor and Michael Swift.
A boost for the Galway based side ahead of the visit of Munster on Boxing Day is the news that Gavin Duffy should be fit.