Jack Conan injury ‘nothing like’ foot problem which ruined last Rugby World Cup

By Sports Desk August 08, 2023

Ireland insist Jack Conan’s latest foot injury is “nothing like” the issue which ruined his last Rugby World Cup and are optimistic he will be fit to feature in France.

Andy Farrell’s squad are in Portugal for a week-long training camp but back-rower Conan stayed in Dublin to rehabilitate the problem he sustained in the first half of Saturday’s 33-17 warm-up victory over Italy.

The 31-year-old was pictured with his right foot in a protective boot after departing the Aviva Stadium pitch, sparking concerns he will endure further World Cup heartache, having prematurely left the 2019 tournament in Japan due to a stress fracture.

Ireland boss Farrell will not discover the full extent of the problem until next week but defence coach Simon Easterby says early signs are “positive”.

Asked if Leinster player Conan is in danger of missing the World Cup, Easterby, speaking from the Algarve, said: “No, genuinely not.

“Jack has in the past had troubles with his foot.

“But it’s nothing like it was back in 2019. He was pretty bullish around the injury.

“From everything that we’re hearing – we haven’t had full feedback yet – it’s a positive injury as a opposed to a really negative one.

“He’s stayed behind just to rehab and we hope to get more information on his injury next week.

“We’re still waiting on assessment and we decided that it would probably be best for him to stay back in Dublin.”

British and Irish Lion Conan spoke last week of having unfinished business at the World Cup due to his disappointment four years ago.

He came off the bench in Ireland’s opening win over Scotland in Yokohama but was then injured in training ahead of the shock defeat by hosts Japan, a match he had been due to start.

Farrell will his cut his current 42-man squad down to a final 33 on August 28 following further warm-up matches against England (August 19) and Samoa (August 26).

Ireland begin their World Cup campaign on September 9 against Romania in Bordeaux.

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