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Ulster Rugby train with Ireland's Six Nations panel as squads cope with coronavirus postponements

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Ulster Rugby are today training with the Ireland squad as both sides have been impacted by coronavirus-inspired postponements.

Ulster Rugby are today training with the Ireland squad as both sides have been impacted by coronavirus-inspired postponements.

©INPHO/Matt Mackey

Ulster Rugby are today training with the Ireland squad as both sides have been impacted by coronavirus-inspired postponements.

Ulster Rugby are training against the Ireland Six Nations squad at the IRFU's high performance centre today as both sides look to cope with their interrupted schedules.

Ulster's PRO14 fixture against Benetton was postponed last weekend due to the coronavirus outbreak in northern Italy, while Ireland's Six Nations game at home to the Italians, scheduled for this Saturday, has also been put off.

It is as yet unclear when either game will be played and in order to keep their players ticking over with big matches on the horizon, the two squads meet in a contested session in Abbottstown.

The training will not include a full-contact game but does see the sides go up against each other in set-play drills and general play.

On Monday, Will Addison was omitted from Ireland's latest squad update, the IRFU having last week confirmed the utility back was continuing his rehabilitation from a calf injury with Ulster Rugby.

That leaves eight Ulster players in the Ireland squad; Iain Henderson, Tom O'Toole, Jack McGrath, Rob Herring, Jacob Stockdale, Billy Burns, Stuart McCloskey and John Cooney.

Ulster's next scheduled fixture is a Pro14 tie at home to Dragons over two weeks away on Friday, March 20, while Ireland are next due on the field in France next Saturday, March 14, for what was originally scheduled to be the final day of the Six Nations tournament.

England had been due to face Italy in Rome that day but their game has also been postponed.

Despite the additional fixture headache, the Six Nations confirmed on Thursday that it "fully intends to complete all 15 games across all three championships when time allows".

Belfast Telegraph