Andrew Trimble passed fit to play, but every hour counts for Cian Healy

IRELAND DEFENCE COACH Les Kiss was enthusiastic about Cian Healy’s fitness progress after working closely with the prop in training today.

Healy is a major doubt for Ireland’s Rugby World Cup campaign next month. However, with the 31 August deadline to finalise the squad approaching fast, the loosehead may yet be included in the hope he can play some role in helping Ireland top Pool D and avoid a likely encounter with New Zealand in the quarter-finals.

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Asked whether it would be fair to allow Healy take up a squad berth when he will go four months without playing a game, Kiss said:

“You’ve got to lean on a number of things. One of those is the type of person you’re dealing with, the experience they offer, experience they’ve had at that level of football and experience of the major competitions.”

Healy, of course, ticks all of the boxes. The only ones remaining to be made certain are the questions surrounding the prop’s neck after his surgery.

“I don’t think it’s a precedent that something like that could happen,” Kiss added, “but we’ll take in all the information we can from the experts, from the coaches, from the people that are closest to the whole thing. But more importantly, from Cian.

“I did some work personally with him at the end of the session around the contact area so (there are) some positive results coming through there.

“As has been the case all the way along he’’ll get assessed this afternoon by the medics after he has had his lunch. He’’ll probably get a massage and the medics will give us something at the end of the day. Then we’’ll think forward from there about where he is going.

“If the medics came to us in an hour’s time and everything looked positive it might happen earlier than the World Cup. We’ll take it day by day. We know what he can deliver. That’s been proven. We will take that into account in some form when we make our decision on Sunday.”

As Kiss spoke he looked at his watch, pointing out that head coach Joe Schmidt is most likely speaking about the same subject with the medical staff at the same time.

Andrew Trimble is over his foot injury and can stake another claim for a squad or starting berth this weekend. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Fortunately, the issues are less clouded among Ireland’s other injury concerns. Andrew Trimble is ” fit to go” after training fully today and tighthead Marty Moore has an outside chance of being involved against Wales in the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.

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“Marty is in a boot still. It’’s there to protect the joint. He’’ll train on Thursday and that will give him and us a good idea of where he is. That should be able to prove whether he is available on the weekend and that’’s probably his important session.”

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