Johnny Sexton will not be available for Leinster’s Rainbow Cup opener against Munster this weekend as he continues to recover from a head injury sustained during the province’s Champions Cup win over Exeter. The Ireland and Leinster captain was removed during the first half of the April 10 game at Sandy Park, a game where the visitors fought back from 14-0 down to record an impressive 34-22 win.

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He also missed Ireland’s Six Nations defeat to France in February after sustaining a head injury in the opening round loss to Wales, and was removed for a HIA shortly after being introduced as a substitute during the Pro14 final defeat of Munster on March 27.

Leinster kick-off their Rainbow Cup campaign against Munster at the RDS this Saturday, and travel to play La Rochelle in the Champions Cup semi-finals on May 2.

The province say that Sexton entered the return to play protocols after the Exeter game and is now having further assessment, outlining that a further update will be provided once “all information is to hand.”

In more positive news, Caelan Doris, James Ryan, Will Connors and Garry Ringrose are all hoping to increase their training load this week following spells on the sideline, and could even come into contention for this weekend’s game against Johann van Graan’s Munster.

Doris and Ryan have both been absent due to concussion-related issues, while Ringrose injured his ankle during the latter stages of Ireland’s Six Nations win against Scotland. Connors injured his knee during an Ireland training session last month and had been expected to miss up to eight weeks, but could now return to action much sooner than anticipated.

Jamison Gibson-Park is also being monitored as he steps up his recovery from a hamstring issue.

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Meanwhile flanker Scott Penny has recovered from a hand injury and is available for selection again, while Tommy O’Brien has also been given the green light to return after overcoming an ankle problem.

There was no new update available on any of Jack Dunne (ankle), Jimmy O’Brien (hamstring), Rowan Osborne (hand), Adam Byrne (quad), Dan Leavy (knee), Conor O’Brien (knee) or Max Deegan (knee)

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