MUNSTER have added eight players to its Greecore Munster Academy, bringing its total number to a maximum 20, ahead of the new season.
Garryowen pair Diarmuid Barron and Jack Daly are joined by Ben Healy of Munster Senior Schools Cup winners Glenstal Abbey, James French (UCC), PBC trio Sean French, Eoghan Clarke and Jonathan Wren and Thomas Aherne, Waterpark. Daly, Barron, James French and Eoghan Clarke all represented Ireland at the recent Under-20 World Cup in France.
Daly and Aherne are products of Munster’s Regional Development Programme. Calvin Nash, Liam O’Connor and Fineen Wycherley have all been promoted this Summer from the Academy to Johann van Graan’s senior squad. Others from the programme coming into shot now are Gavin Coombes (Young Munster), Cork Con’s Shane Daly and Sean O’Connor of Garryowen.
Academy Year Two players: Craig Casey (Shannon), Liam Coombes (Garryowen), Keynon Knox (UL Bohemian), James McCarthy (UL/Bohemian), Alex McHenry (Cork Constitution), Matt Moore (Garryowen), Jack O’Sullivan (UCC), Jack Stafford (Shannon) and Alan Tynan of Young Munster.
Meanwhile, Munster will again work closely next in 2018/’19 with a select number of nominated charity partners to help raise awareness and funds for specific projects. “By focusing with each charity on specific projects that are important to them, the aim is for Munster Rugby to make a real difference through the involvement of players, interaction at matches and the association of the Munster Rugby brand,” a spokesperson said.
Working with the charities throughout the season, Munster Rugby looks to support the nominated charities in several ways including player appearances, complimentary hospital box on occasions and signed merchandise.
Munster Rugby’s Nominated Charity Programme was established in 2010 as an official structure to actively support selected charities on an annual basis. All applications are reviewed over the summer by a committee containing members from the Munster Branch, senior players, team management and staff representatives. Further details on www.munsterrugby.ie and the application process will close on July 20.
On a couple of consecutive Friday night’s deep into August, Munster has arranged pre-season friendlies for Musgrave Park, against Declan Kidney’s London Irish and Premiership runners-up and upcoming Heineken European Champions opponents Exeter Chiefs. In his memorable time with Munster, Kidney guided Munster to two great European wins, and later was Head Coach with an Irish Triple Crown winning squad.
Family tickets are available from only €30, or €50 for both matches. Single adult admission can be purchased in advance at €15 (€25 for both fixtures), and junior entry is just a €5. The games will be the first to be played on the new 3G surface.
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by Mal Keaveney