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Munster Academy Producing The Goods

29th May 2007 By Munster Rugby

The worth of the Munster Academy is highlighted with the news that six of its members will take up first time professional contracts this coming season with Munster while a seventh, Darragh Hurley, moves from Development to a full time contract.

The worth of the Munster Academy is highlighted with the news that six of its members will take up first time professional contracts this coming season with Munster while a seventh, Darragh Hurley, moves from Development to a full time contract.

Hurley, the UCC prop has already been capped 12 times at Munster senior level since making his debut in the Magners League game against Cardiff Blues at The Arms Park last September while Keith Earls (Thomond), currently in England with the Ireland A Churchill Cup squad moved from Academy to Development on the 1st January this year and made his Munster senior debut in April.

Scrum-half Gerry Hurley (Garryowen), full-back Denis Hurley (Cork Constitution) and his club colleague, prop Tim Ryan – all part of the 2005 Academy intake along with Cork Con centre Tom Gleeson and lock Mark Melbourne (Garryowen)  have all accepted Development contracts ahead of the coming season.

Academy Manager Hamish Adams explains that the purpose of the Academy , "is to span the the bridge between the professional & amateur game. To that end we have increased the human resources so that myself and Ian Costello (Elite Rugby Development Officer) have now been joined by Ray Egan (Sub-Academy fitness trainer) and former international Ken O’Connell (Elite RDO) is due to begin work with us in July."

 

Egan’s role as Sub Academy fitness trainer involves him working closely with coaches at school and club level throughout the province.

"The Academy continues to develop and it is particularly rewarding for those of us involved at a day to day level to see players progress to the next level, ie professional rugby contracts, continued Adams, "The work being done now with the province’s elite young talent, from the age of 15 years in the clubs and schools, will ensure that the future of Munster Rugby is successful."

So while the topic of conversation among supporters in the close season centres round who Munster are signing or more to the point, bringing in from abroad, it is often forgotten that Adams and his team have been working in the backround, ensuring that Irish clubs players are given the opportunity to progress to Heineken Cup/Magners League level.

 

 

 

 

 

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