Brian O'Driscoll hopeful of being fit for Amlin Challenge Cup final

Ireland centre Brian O'Driscoll should be fit to play in Leinster's Amlin Challenge Cup final against Stade Francais in Dublin on Friday.

O'Driscoll, 34, hurt his back in his side's Pro-12 play-off match against Glasgow and was considered a doubt for the British and Irish Lions tour.

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It's likely at some stage over the next couple of weeks that someone is going to get an injury

Warren Gatland Lions coach

But Lions coach Warren Gatland said the injury was not a serious one.

"It is keeping him off his feet for 48 hours but it's something he has had once a year," he said.

"He is hopeful to be ready for this Friday and fingers crossed everything will be OK for him."

O'Driscoll left the field after only 13 minutes of Saturday's 17-15 win and missed a Lions meeting and media event in London on Monday to stay in Dublin for further treatment.

His Lions squad-mate, back row Sean O'Brien, 26, is doubtful for the final after suffering a recurrence of a calf muscle injury.

Leinster will be without Gordon D'Arcy, who sustained a calf tear in the win over Glasgow, while Richardt Strauss (knee) and Fergus McFadden (shin) are also fitness doubts for Joe Schmidt's side.

With 15 of his Lions squad involved in European and domestic finals over the next fortnight, Gatland accepts it is likely he will need to summon at least one replacement before they leave for Hong Kong on 27 May.

"You want the players to be getting good quality games and playing at the highest level," he said. "You are hoping they are going to be right getting on the plane.

"The unfortunate thing, though, is it's likely at some stage over the next couple of weeks that someone is going to get an injury and be ruled out of the tour. That will be hugely disappointing for that player but in the back of your mind you are preparing for that."

Despite the risk of injury, Gatland has urged the six-strong Leicester and Leinster contingents, plus Northampton's Dylan Hartley and Ulster's Tommy Bowe, and Toulon's Gethin Jenkins, not to hold back as they aim to sign off their club seasons with a trophy.

Countdown to Lions tour

  • 14-17 May: Lions training camp in Wales
  • 17 & 18 May: Amlin Challenge Cup & Heineken Cup finals
  • 20-24 May: Lions training camp in Dublin
  • 25 May: Premiership and Pro 12 finals, French Top 14 semis
  • 27 May: Lions fly to Hong Kong

"I think it is tough for the players knowing that a few days after a big game they are getting on the plane," he added.

"There is a bit of trepidation in terms of not trying to pick up an injury, but if you go in with that attitude, trying to look after yourself, you are more likely to pick up an injury. Our advice to the players is just to go for it hell for leather."

The Lions start their tour with a game against the Barbarians on 1 June in Hong Kong with their first match in Australia coming in Perth on 5 June against Western Force.

The Test matches against Australia take place on 22 June, 29 June and 6 July.