LEINSTER FORWARDS COACH Jonno Gibbes has revealed the province intend to start prop Cian Healy against Treviso on Saturday.
Healy received a three week ban from the IRB citing commissioners yesterday following a stamp on English forward Dan Coles during Ireland’s 12-6 home loss.
The IRFU are considering an appeal against the ban, which will see Healy miss Six Nations games against Scotland and France.
Gibbes told TheScore.ie, “He’s certainly available.
“Joe [Schmidt] and Declan Kidney have been in touch to discuss the international players. I would certainly be delighted to have him back.
“Cian will be one of those guys they’ve discussed that will be considered.”
Asked if he had any issues with starting a player while questions still remain over the validity of his ban, Gibbes remarked, “Not for me.” He added:
There are complications for others maybe. Cian is just like the other international players that are in consideration [for the game].”
No bone throwing
Speaking about the decision to ban Healy for three weeks but delay it so that he misses the France home tie on 9 March, Gibbes said, “Nothing really is surprising when a judiciary is involved.
“You go into them with an open mind.”
It is expected that the home against Treviso will feature backs Luke Fitzgerald an Fergus McFadden, who are both vying for game time to impress their claims upon Kidney for an Ireland start against the Scots.
Gibbes gave no more away, commenting that he has too much respect for Treviso coach Franco Smith ‘to throw him a bone.”