Cian Healy could make his Ireland comeback as soon as next week

The loosehead prop is back in full training.

Image: Billy Stickland/INPHO

IRELAND HEAD COACH Joe Schmidt says he hasn’t ruled Cian Healy out of involvement in the World Cup warm-up clash against England at Twickenham on 5 September.

Schmidt spoke encouragingly about the latest progress of loosehead prop Healy, who is on the comeback trail from neck surgery late last season.

The Leinster man trained fully at Ireland’s Carton House base this week, according to Schmidt, meaning his chance of featuring in the World Cup has greatly increased.

“He’s really picking up,” said Schmidt this afternoon, “he’s doing really well. He trained fully Tuesday and Thursday, he did all the contact.

“He’s a lot more positive about where potentially he can get to in the next week or two or three weeks. That gives us a bit of confidence as well. He’s going to keep working. He’s obviously not involved this week but I wouldn’t rule next week out.

The way he’s going, I wouldn’t rule out some involvement. If he is involved, it would most likely be off the bench and we’d be looking to maybe give him 20 minutes. But then we’re also prepared to be patient and I guess the challenge for him is to stand by and watch Jack McGrath and Dave Kilcoyne, and let them put their hands up again.

“It makes it a difficult task to compare and contrast the three of them when one of them hasn’t played.”

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