Ireland trio declared fit for action ahead of Australia clash

It's good news after Ireland had to contend with numerous injuries during the All Blacks game

BY Raf Diallo 16:09 Tuesday 22 November 2016, 16:09 22 Nov 2016

Keith Earls ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Connacht's Ultan Dillane and Munster pair Keith Earls and Peter O'Mahony have been declared fit for Ireland's final November series match against Australia.

It represents good news for the Irish camp after last Saturday's bruising second clash against New Zealand at Aviva Stadium.

Centre Robbie Henshaw and out-half Johnny Sexton were both withdrawn during the first half against the All Blacks and were subsequently ruled out for the Australia encounter this coming Saturday at Aviva Stadium.

CJ Stander with Head Coach Joe Schmidt. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Full-back Rob Kearney also developed "concussive symptoms" after the New Zealand game and will follow the return to play protocols, while back-row CJ Stander will also follow return to play protocols. 

Simon Zebo shares a joke with Keith Earls. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Both Kearney and Stander are said to be making good progress in their recovery, but remain unable to take a full part in training.

Wing Simon Zebo took part in what was described as "managed training" by forwards coach Guy Easterby as he recovers from the after-effects of cramp.

Former Ireland soccer international Keith Andrews took in the training session. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

All Blacks' Malakai Fekitoa was sin-binned for a high tackle on Zebo which Newstalk Breakfast presenter and ex-Ireland and Munster back-row Alan Quinlan felt warranted a "straight red card".

On the tackle which resulted in Henshaw being withdrawn, he said: "I don't think Sam Cane deliberately meant to hurt Rob Henshaw, but whether it's accidental or not, you need to take responsibility for your actions."

Ireland's clash against Australia gets underway at 5.30pm on Saturday, with the Wallabies coming off the back of a narrow 25-23 over France in Paris on the same Saturday that Ireland were facing New Zealand for the second time in the November series.

Australia also narrowly beat Scotland 23-22 at Murrayfield the previous weekend. 

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