IRELAND HAVE DRAFTED in Leinster scrum-half Isaac Boss as injury cover for Eoin Reddan, who is ‘highly unlikely’ to feature against Scotland.
The Irish management initially appeared to rule Reddan, who has a tight calf, out of this weekend’s action before rowing back. The Limerick native, we were told, still has a chance to prove his fitness at Friday’s final training session before the Ireland matchday 23 is named.
Boss, who scored a Wolfhounds try against the Saxons at the weekend, is odds-on to deputise for Munster’s Conor Murray for Sunday’s Six Nations opener.
Murray said, “I still see the game the exact same. Bossy is there and obviously Kieran Marmion is knocking around. To be honest, I’m just trying to focus on my own game to make sure I’m as sharp as I can be in case, fingers crossed, I get the nod. It’s huge that there’s three or four players for each position but I’m just trying to look after my own corner.”
Upon getting the starting nod, Murray will come up against Scotland’s goal-kicking scrum-half Greig Laidlaw. “I rate him highly as a player,” said Murray.
He’s a real focal point of their team and he drives a lot of their plays. I’ve played against him a handful of times with Scotland and we’d liked to think we know him quite well but that doesn’t take away how much of a threat he can be. We’ll have to keep our eyes on him.”
Lock Mike McCarthy, who got 23 stitches in his head after he was on the receiving end of an Ian Evans stamp, will wear protective head-gear if he is selected to face the Scots at Lansdowne Road. Luke Fitzgerald [groin] will need to prove his is fully fit and ready to play on Sunday.
Hooker Richardt Strauss was pictured a Ireland’s training session this morning but an IRFU spokesperson confirmed that Rory Best and Sean Cronin are fully sit and ready for selection in two days’ time.