Munster head coach Tony McGahan has admitted he is staring down the barrel of an injury crisis ahead of his side’s RaboDirect PRO12 showdown with rivals Leinster on Saturday.
McGahan’s defending champions host leaders Leinster having regained second spot last Saturday with a hard-fought 20-16 win over Connacht at the Sportsground and closing the gap on Leinster, who lost at home to the Ospreys on Friday, to eight points.
Captain Paul O’Connell and scrum-half Conor Murray, who both picked up knee injuries while on international duty with Ireland, missed the trip to Galway however, as did second-row Donnacha Ryan.
And McGahan has conceded he could be without the trio ahead of the weekend’s clash at Thomond Park.
“Paul is making solid progress, Conor is in the same boat so we will get a better read on them on in the coming days, but Paul is doubtful,” McGahan told the Irish Independent.
“Donnacha Ryan has got a sore shoulder so he is in doubt as well.”
One shining light for McGahan however was the fact that flanker David Wallace came through the first 40 minutes against Connacht unscathed – his first Munster start since injuring his knee in a World Cup warm-up match against England.
“David only played 40, it was his first major hit-out and that was the plan,” added McGahan.