Mixed news on an injury front for Munster.
This Saturday, Munster will welcome Saracens to the Aviva in the Champions Cup semi final in arguably their most important match since the 2008 Heineken Cup final.
As reigning champions, Saracens will be favourites to advance to the final against either Leinster or Clermont who face off a day later.
However, Munster have shown their resilience of old this season, notably in last weekend’s victory over Ulster in the Pro 12.
An injury ravaged Munster finished with Peter O’Mahony on the wing and 4th choice scrum half, Abrie Griesel operating at 9. Despite all this, Munster still came away with a valuable 22-20 victory in Thomond Park.
Yet, there were some injury scares ahead of the Semi Final suffered. Rory Scannell had to be replaced with an ankle injury which is not as severe as first thought. CJ Stander and Conor Murray were again unavailable whilst Duncan Williams was deemed unfit just before kick off. Darren Sweetnam was replaced in the opening minutes, suffering concussion.
A couple of days removed from the game, some injuries are starting to clear just in time. CJ Stander looks to be winning his race to be fit in time for the clash, as does Scannell who hopes to take part in some training this week.
Duncan Williams is recovering well from a groin strain and should be fit to face the English club. Williams may well prove vital this weekend as it looks like Conor Murray will not be fit in time.
This is a massive blow to Rassie Erasmus, who had hoped Murray would have recovered by now. Murray is still struggling with a stinger injury and has not taken part in any contact training since suffering injury against the Welsh.
Tylor Bleyendaal was introduced during the Ulster game after suffering a concussion the previous week whilst Darren Sweetnam will follow a similar protocol after his HIA during the Ulster game.
While Murray is the only man looking like losing his battle with injury ahead of the Saracens clash, his absence would be a massive blow to the Munster cause, such is his importance.
Let’s hope that he injury updates later in the week bring better news.