First Ireland call-up for Gavin Coombes after two injury set-backs 7 months ago

First Ireland call-up for Gavin Coombes after two injury set-backs

Andy Farrell has brought in two young guns to help with his team's preparations.

Ireland have called Munster back-row Gavin Coombes and the versatile Leinster forward Ryan Baird for a week of training with the senior squad.


The additions have been made after Farrell lost two senior players to injury set-backs. An IRFU statement on the refreshed squad reads:

'Caelan Doris and Quinn Roux have returned to their respective provinces for further medical assessment.

'Caelan has flagged some symptoms that could be associated with concussion.   He has returned to Leinster to allow his symptoms to be appropriately assessed and investigated. Quinn has a neck complaint that has not settled so he has returned to Connacht.

'Munster back-row Gavin Coombes and Leinster lock Ryan Baird will train with the Ireland squad this week. All other squad members are expected to train this week.'

"They are two injuries you never want to be messing around with," says Ireland's forwards coach, Paul O'Connell. "You have to be careful... it's frustrating for them and for us. Caelan is a fantastic player. I worked with him in the Under 20s and he was incredible. He has that X factor, and you need those players in world rugby.

"I played against Quinn a few times towards the end of my career, and he was excellent. We'd a laugh about my last game against him and Connacht at The Sportsground. We lost to them and he was brilliant that day."

With all other senior players out on the training paddock, this week, Ireland expect Iain Henderson to be in the selection mix for Sunday's game against Wales.

"A big part of consistency [for Iain] is being injury free," says O'Connell. "He's in a work-rate position, where the fitter you are, the more you can deliver. He's been unlucky with injuries. He's obviously a big man, and we don't really breed them that big. He's been really impressive since I've come in, in terms of his work-rate, training and his work-rate off the field, in terms of his preparation and analysis."