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Published: 14:42 | 10/10/16

O'Brien in line for Leinster return

Sean O'Brien could make his long-awaited Leinster return in this weekend's Champions Cup clash with Castres.

O'Brien has not played since he sustained a serious injury just 20 minutes into Ireland's RBS Six Nations defeat to France in February. He came close to making his return in the latter stages of last season only to suffer a setback which required surgery.

The flanker recently admitted he was reluctant to rush his return but he has been working on his fitness and could feature at the weekend.

“Sean got through a lot of work last weekend and then during the week. He has a couple more markers to hit, he'll train fully today and tomorrow and we'll review him and see how he is," Leinster backs coach Girvan Dempsey explained.

"We'll make him available for selection if he gets through that work. It'll really just depend on how he is. You'd be confident that you'll see him on the field, if not this weekend, but definitely next weekend.

"He'll have to fight for his place to get back in there but it's a great place to be. He is chomping at the bit. He has been very influential while he has been off the field."

While O'Brien is close to returning, Fergus McFadden is set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

McFadden sustained a quad injury against Cardiff Blues last month and Dempsey has confirmed he will not play for a 'number of weeks'.

"It's very unfortunate. He has just had a quad tear. It's unfortunate for Fergus, he picked that up and it was worse than we initially feared. He is going to be out for a number of weeks," Dempsey confirmed.

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