LEINSTER COACH JOE Schmidt is hoping that his first-choice full-back Rob Kearney can return to fitness within ‘two or three weeks’.
Kearney left the blues’ match against Connacht early last Friday owing to a back injury sustained after he landed awkwardly from catching a high ball.
Yesterday, Schmidt confirmed that Kearney would not make it back in time to face Munster at the Aviva Stadium this Saturday and reports today suggested the 26-year-old could need as much as six weeks recuperation.
However, speaking at today’s Heineken Cup launch, the Kiwi marked Kearney absent for “two to three weeks”, ruling him out of both Munster and the Exeter Chiefs’ trip to Dublin.
“I chatted to Rob, he’s already starting to feel quite a lot better and so we’re hopeful for Exeter (October 13) and quietly confident for Scarlets (October 20).
“For us, that’s a pretty good position to be in.” Added Schmidt.
The head coach’s relief at the prognosis can be put down to his respect for Llanelli Scarlets, who routed his side 45-20 in the opening game of the season.
Though there are two massive games between now and the trip to Parc Y Scarlets later this month, with George North among the outside backs of the Welsh outfit, Schmidt will be hoping to muster his most powerful defenders in the back division.