Ireland’s backroom staff are remaining hopeful that Keith Earls will be passed fit to play against France this weekend after the winger was forced off against Wales with a suspected concussion.
The Munster winger, who was handed a start out wide following the injuries to Luke Fitzgerald and Tommy Bowe, proved to be solid in his defensive work on Sunday in his side’s 16-16 draw in Dublin but was caught up in controversy after a dangerous tip tackle on Wales’ Liam Williams.
And the 28-year-old eventually had to be taken off after suffering a knock to the head that left Earls dazed, however, the indications from Joe Schmidt’s camp remain positive that he will make a full recovery before their match in Paris on Saturday.
Ireland assistant coach Richie Murphy told the BBC:
Keith feels pretty good himself but a six-day turnaround – we will just have to assess that later in the week and see where he is at.
We are squeezed for time but no player is going to be ruled out yet.
Leinster winger Fergus McFadden has joined up with the squad as cover should Earls fail to pass his fitness test whilst further good news arrived in the form of Rob Kearney and Sean O’Brien both expecting to start against France.
However, Jonny Sexton, Simon Zebo and Andrew Trimble all sat out training on Tuesday in Kildare but the trio are expected to participate in Ireland’s Thursday session with little concern that they will miss Saturday’s game.