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Mar 16, 2019 at 2.45pm UK
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Kearney and Carbery in battle to prove fitness for Wales clash

Kearney and Carbery in battle to prove fitness for Wales clash
© Reuters
Full-back and fly-half yet to prove fitness for trip to Cardiff.

Rob Kearney and Joey Carbery must still prove their fitness ahead of Ireland's Guinness Six Nations clash in Wales on Saturday.

Full-back Kearney was a late withdrawal from Sunday's 26-14 win over France with calf trouble, while fly-half Carbery missed out due to a hamstring complaint.

Ireland scrum coach Greg Feek has admitted both men must now come through training sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday to be ready for the weekend's Cardiff trip.

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Josh Van Der Flier will definitely miss out with a groin injury, but Dan Leavy is fit after ankle trouble and Sean O'Brien is back in the squad with both further options at flanker.

Asked for the latest bulletin on Kearney and Carbery, Feek replied: "To be honest, we'll have to wait and see; at the moment, they're ready to rock and roll.

"It was a precautionary thing for Rob last week so we're hoping that he's fine but again he's the best judge of that at the end of the day.

"Getting out there with the boots on will be the key factor, so we'll see how they go (in training). They're getting their boots on and we'll have a light run around.

Ireland v England – Guinness Six Nations – Aviva Stadium
Joey Carbery, pictured, is hoping to be fit for Ireland's clash with Wales in Cardiff (Lorraine O'Sullivan/PA)

"Josh Van Der Flier has been withdrawn this week due to a groin injury.

"Obviously with a short turnaround this week it's hard to get those sorts of things right."

Ireland hit back to form with a punishing bonus-point victory over a lacklustre France in Dublin on Sunday.

Captain Rory Best, Johnny Sexton, Jack Conan and Keith Earls crossed as Joe Schmidt enjoyed a fine win in his last home Six Nations match as Ireland boss.

Victory sustained Ireland's slender title chances, though Saturday's opponents Wales will seal a first Grand Slam in six years with a win in Cardiff.

Van Der Flier's absence opens up a back-row vacancy, but Feek insisted Ireland should have options at their disposal.

Ireland v USA – Autumn International – Aviva Stadium
Tadhg Beirne, pictured, is in contention for Ireland selection (Niall Carson/PA)

O'Brien was omitted from the France clash after a below-par showing in the 26-16 win in Rome, with the British and Irish Lions star working back to top form after injury.

Leinster star Dan Leavy is fit again after ankle trouble and could be in contention for his first appearance in this year's tournament.

Feek additionally confirmed Munster lock Tadhg Beirne, who can also operate on the flank, is another pushing hard for inclusion.

"Tadhg Beirne, he's looking pretty good as well; he's got his hand up for selection and he'll train again today," said Feek.

"Dan Leavy is in the group as well and he'll train with us fully. We got him in to make sure he's all good.

"He's been in the squad before and it's just to see how things go with him this afternoon and the other guys as well.

"The short turnaround is what it is, it doesn't affect our preparation. We've done it before and we'll see how today goes."

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