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Ireland issue Jack Conan update and separately call-up front cover

(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Injured Ireland back-rower Jack Conan is going really well in his recovery from the foot problem which cast doubt on his World Cup participation. The 31-year-old, who was forced off in the first half of his country’s 33-17 win over Italy on August 5, remained in Dublin last week as the rest of Andy Farrell’s squad trained in Portugal.


Conan has reunited with teammates since their return home but did not train on Tuesday, suggesting he is unlikely to be involved in Saturday’s warm-up fixture against England in Dublin.

Head coach Farrell, who has called up Jeremy Loughman as cover for fellow Munster prop Dave Kilcoyne, will give a clearer update on the Leinster player’s condition on Thursday when he names his team for the weekend.

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Speaking of Conan, scrum coach John Fogarty said: “He has been going really well – through the week last week. Andy will be up (in front of the media) on Thursday and he will give you some further information. He [Conan] has had a good week – a really, really good week.”

Farrell is scheduled to name his final 33-man squad for France on August 28 following the meeting with Steve Borthwick’s side and a final run out against Samoa in Bayonne.

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Kilcoyne’s issue is not thought to be serious, albeit it has opened the door for 28-year-old Loughman, who made his Test debut against Fiji in November. “It is a pleasure to bring in Jeremy,” said Fogarty. “I thought Munster in the last six games (of the season) had done so well and Jeremy was part of that.

“He had a really good session today [Tuesday]. It’s actually brilliant to be able to bring someone like Jeremy in that can add (to us). Dave is just looking after himself for the week, so Jeremy will step in with us.”


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Shaylen 6 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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FEATURE Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma