A potential positive Covid case has been identified in the Ireland rugby squad ahead of Saturday’s clash with the All Blacks.
Andy Farrell’s management will hope that the latest round of PCR testing has delivered a false positive – and further testing is being undertaken to confirm the findings.
Farrell will also hope that the situation is contained. The whole squad and the management team have undergone additional lateral flow and PCR testing today.
Connacht hooker Dave Heffernan is reportedly on standby, with Ulster thrower Rob Herring understood to have missed today’s Captain’s Run, while Tadhg Beirne is poised to replace Iain Henderson in the team after the Ulster skipper also failed to train.
“The lateral flow testing returned no positives and the PCR results are expected later today,” read a IRFU statement.
“As a precaution today’s planned Captain’s Run media briefing will be switched from in-person to virtual. Further updates will follow later today.”
Farrell named his squad yesterday for the clash, with Johnny Sexton again picked to captain the side and with that just one change from last week’s nine-try victory over Japan – Henderson for Beirne, which could now be reversed due to events.
The All Blacks have made 14 changes from the side that won against Italy in Rome last weekend, with Brodie Retallick returning from injury and Beauden Barrett named at out-half in a strong line-up.
It is the first meeting of the sides since the 2019 World Cup quarter-final victory for the All Blacks in Japan, but the last time the sides met in Dublin, Ireland secured a first-ever win on