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European opener for Munster

Wednesday, 11th October, 2017 4:23pm

Munster will have to put their Pro14 defeat to Leinster behind them as they begin their European’s Champion Cup campaign this weekend.
The team face Castres away in their opening game of the tournament on the back of a 23-17 defeat in Dublin to Leinster. In welcome news for Munster Rugby Director Rassie Erasmus, there are no fresh injury concerns for the province following Saturday’s clash at the Aviva Stadium while a number of players stepped up their rehabilitation programmes this week.

James Cronin returned to full training from the knee niggle he sustained against Ospreys, as did academy lock Sean O’Connor having recovered from the neck injury he sustained against Glasgow.

Jean Kleyn who also sustained a neck injury at Scotstoun, continues to be managed by the medical team. Darren O’Shea continues to make good strides post-shoulder surgery and progresses to modified training this week.

Gerbrandt Grobler (ankle), Conor Oliver (shoulder), Dan Goggin (knee), Ronan O’Mahony (fibula), Dave O’Callaghan (knee) and Jaco Taute (knee) are among the players who are continuing with rehab and will not be in contention for Saturday’s match.

Erasmus will name his side at midday on Friday.

Elsewhere in the weekend’s Ulster Bank League action, having made the journey with Munster to Dublin as a travelling extra alongside Darren Sweetnam, Kevin O’Byrne started and scored a try for Cork Con in their 24-10 loss to Lansdowne on the Aviva Stadium back pitch.

Joining the hooker in the Con side were the academy trio of Shane Daly, Alex McHenry and Vincent O’Brien.

Meanwhile, Dolphin had a day to forget in their all-Munster derby away to Shannon, losing 52-0 while UCC were 31-5 winners over Naas.

In Division 2A Highfield were 22-9 winners over Greystones, in 2B Sunday’s Well beat City of Derry 36-19 while in 2C Midleton suffered a 34-24 loss to Bective Rangers.

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