Billy Stickland/INPHO Tadhg Beirne has been ruled out of the Exeter clash.
# big blow
Beirne, Coombes, Kilcoyne, and Conway all ruled out of Munster's trip to Exeter
However, Mike Haley, Jean Kleyn and Simon Zebo are fit and available again.

MUNSTER HAVE CONFIRMED several heavy injury blows as Tadhg Beirne, Gavin Coombes, Dave Kilcoyne, and Andrew Conway have all been ruled out of this weekend’s visit to Exeter in the Champions Cup.

Head coach Johann van Graan will have to do without the Ireland international quartet for Saturday’s first leg of the province’s round-of-16 match-up against the English side, while they could also miss the second leg at Thomond Park.

Influential second row Tadhg Beirne has been nursing a thigh injury since Ireland’s Six Nations campaign and Munster say he is “awaiting a specialist review” of that issue.

Loosehead prop Kilcoyne has already seen a specialist for his neck injury and is now facing “a period of rehabilitation.”

Wing Conway was also injured while on Ireland duty and his knee problem has seen him added to Munster’s longer-term injury list.

Number eight Coombes, meanwhile, suffered an ankle injury during last weekend’s URC defeat to Leinster and must wait for the results of a scan to determine the severity of that issue.

The injury blows are heavy for Munster, given that all four players are clear first-choice picks when available.

However, there is positive injury news for van Graan ahead of the first Exeter clash, with second row Jean Kleyn, fullback Mike Haley, and wing/fullback Simon Zebo all passed fit to return.

Kleyn has recovered from a leg issue, Haley is fit again after a knee problem, and Zebo has been given the all-clear having recovered from a head injury.

Loosehead prop Liam O’Connor is also back after a knee injury and back row Jack Daly is fit again following an ankle issue.

RG Snyman and James French both remain sidelined with knee injuries.

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