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Prop Furlong getting closer to full fitness

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Tadhg Furlong. Photo: Sportsfile

Tadhg Furlong. Photo: Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Tadhg Furlong. Photo: Sportsfile

Leinster and Ireland have been handed a major boost as Tadhg Furlong is set to increase his training load this week after his calf injury.

A back problem followed by the calf issue has meant Furlong has yet to play since rugby's return in August. The tighthead has missed several big games already, including the conclusion of Ireland's Six Nations campaign.

Recovery

Andy Farrell will be keen not to rush one of his key men back too soon, but with four games coming up in the Autumn Nations Cup, Furlong will be expected to feature. So too will Ryan Baird, as he also steps up his recovery from an adductor strain.

The uncapped lock was included in the Ireland squad before he was forced to withdraw due to the injury picked up last month.

Hooker Seán Cronin is also on the comeback trail following a spell out with a minor thumb injury.

Leinster are set to travel to take on the Ospreys on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Munster's PRO14 clash against Benetton on Saturday has been postponed after three players in the Italian team tested positive for Covid-19.

With another four players self-isolating having been deemed close contacts, the clash has been put on hold, with a new date to be fixed for early 2021.

Benetton's meeting with Connacht last weekend was also called off due to Covid related issues.

As is the case with any postponed PRO14 games, a new date will be found rather than any team having to give a walkover.


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