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Monday 5 December 2016

Rob Kearney a doubt for Italy tie next Sunday

Rob Kearney, Ireland, beats the tackle of Paula Kinikinilau, Romania, on the way to scoring his side's 5th try. 2015 Rugby World Cup, Pool D, Ireland v Romania, Wembley Stadium
Rob Kearney, Ireland, beats the tackle of Paula Kinikinilau, Romania, on the way to scoring his side's 5th try. 2015 Rugby World Cup, Pool D, Ireland v Romania, Wembley Stadium

Rob Kearney is Ireland’s main injury doubt ahead of next Sunday’s showdown with Italy.

“Rob was involved in a high-speed play after coming on the pitch and, just after scoring the try, he’s jarred himself,” said coach Joe Schmidt.

“It’s through his glute and hip. It happened when his knee hit the ground.

“We hope it’s not too much but the next 24 to 48 hours will tell if he’s done anything telling for next week.”

It is one thing to take on Italy without the mainstay full-back; quite another to tackle France without him in less than two weeks. 

The obvious alternative would be to turn to Simon Zebo, who has made a fine fist out of playing full-back for Ireland.

The Munster magic man was there against Romania where he was a threat in attack making three of Ireland’s half-dozen tries.

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