Six Nations 2019: Ireland's Rhys Ruddock ruled out of Italy game

Ireland's Chris Farrell takes on Scotland's Greig Laidlaw
Chris Farrell started Ireland's round-two win against Scotland at Murrayfield
Six Nations 2019: Italy v Ireland
Venue: Stadio Olimpico, Rome Date: Sunday, 24 February Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Ulster, BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary.

Ireland flanker Rhys Ruddock has been ruled out of Sunday's Six Nations match against Italy but Munster's Chris Farrell and Tadhg Beirne could feature.

Ruddock, 28, picked up a hamstring injury in training with Leinster that will rule him out of the trip to Rome.

Farrell, 25, suffered a blow to a knee last week but the centre will continue his recovery in Ireland camp this week.

Munster team-mate Beirne, 27, will also link up with the squad following the lock's recovery from a knee injury.

The second row missed Ireland's opening two Six Nations fixtures against England and Scotland but could win his fifth Test cap on Sunday at the Stadio Olimpico.

Andrew Conway, who missed the victory against Scotland with a tight calf, and hooker Niall Scannell both came through Munster's seven-try win against Southern Kings on Friday without suffering any injury and they will also train with the Ireland squad this week.

Farrell was substituted during the first half of the game against Kings but Munster say he was withdrawn as a precautionary measure.

Ruddock captained Ireland against Italy in their autumn series match in Chicago last November but Leinster say a "mild" hamstring injury will prevent the blind-side flanker from adding to his 21 Ireland caps this week.

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