Conor Murray at a Munster training session
MUNSTER head coach Rassie Erasmus remains hopeful scrum-half Conor Murray will recover from a troubling shoulder injury in time to feature for the province in the final weeks of the Guinness Pro12 season.
Murray has not played a game since injuring his shoulder while playing for Ireland in their RBS 6 Nations clash with Wales in Cardiff in mid-March.
The Limerick scrum-half is running out of time to feature for Munster who have just one Pro12 regular season fixture against Connacht to come at Thomond Park this Saturday, 5.15pm, as well as a home semi-final against either the Scarlets or Ospreys seven days later.
Murray is also in line to play for the British and Irish Lions in New Zealand this summer having been included in Warren Gatland's touring party.
Erasmus was more upbeat about Murray's chances of featuring for Munster in the coming weeks when speaking at their weekly press briefing this Monday at UL. Munster have also confirmed that winger Ronan O'Mahony fractured his fibula in the weekend bonus point win away to Treviso.
In relation to Murray's injury progress, Erasmus said there is a chance he could get gametime against champions Connacht this weekend: “Conor is definitely progressing, he is definitely getting better. I hope he gets a game in. There is definitely two (games) to go, hopefully in one of those two.
“He’ll again be touch and go for this week. I can’t tell you, I haven’t actually seen him this morning. But last week he wasn’t ready to go. So we’ll see how he goes today (Monday) in training.
“Every week he contributes more in training sessions and he is doing more and more and more. And he has been ticking all the boxes, much slower than we hoped to, but he is ticking the boxes.
“Hopefully this week he gets to the end of the week and we can actually select him. So there is a chance, there is a chance.”
Erasmus said O'Mahony's injury was especially unfortunate as he has been in excellent form this season and is their leading tryscorer.
“Ronan is definitely out for a while with a broken leg, so he will be out definitely for the rest of the season.
“He is unfortunate, he has been playing really well and he’s our top try scorer so far this season. Obviously he is a bit down, especially at this time of the year where we are hopefully into more than one play-off.
“Dave (O'Callaghan) will be going for a scan (for a knee injury) today (Monday) , but I think we can be quite sure he will be also out. There might be a miracle, but I think he is also pretty serious, it will be a while.”