Munster Rugby v Zebre Rugby Match Programme

MunsterRugbyMatchProgrammes

Guinness PRO14 Round 8 | Find out all you need to know ahead of Munster v Zebre. Hear from Johann van Graan and Matt Gallagher in the build up to the game.

We take a look back at Ireland's win over Georgia with a debut for Shane Daly on Sunday.

Read all about young Academy number eight Alex Kendellen, Enya Breen's pathway to International honours, and George Clancy about hanging up his whistle.

v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB | MON 30 NOV 2020 | THOMOND PARK | 8.15PM

MUNSTER v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB | 30.11.20 | THOMOND PARK

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PRESIDENT’S WELCOME

Park. Think of it as a game closer to the day

when we will be there in person.

Loved in Munster.

Followed the world over.

Always represented.

The domestic game is still on hold while we wait

for direction from the government. The IRFU are

working hard on what the competitions might

look like when rugby resumes and mapping out

a plan for the rest of the season. Hopefully, we

will have positive news soon.

Taking a line from the IRFU website: There are

more important things than sport, but sport has

never been more important.

This evening we welcome Michael Bradley and

his Zebre team to Thomond Park for Round 8 of

the Guinness PRO14. Zebre come to Thomond

Park with 1 win from 7, a stat that Michael

Bradley undoubtedly will be disappointed with,

given that they have run some teams very

close.

Munster’s good run of form continued last

Monday night against Glasgow at Scotstoun

Stadium. This was a game that was played in

extremely difficult conditions and was high

tempo from the very start. Johann and all the

team will be happy with the result and of course

the hard-earned 5 points on the road. The win

sees them on top of Conference B with a game

at hand. Undoubtedly, this evening’s game is

one that Johann and all the team will be fully

focused on and will not be taking anything for

granted.

Congratulations to all of the Munster players

involved in the Irish squad, especially Shane

Daly who made his debut in the green jersey

yesterday in Dublin in the win over Georgia.

Once again, thank you to Bank of Ireland our

main sponsor, adidas, our kit supplier and all

our sponsors. Your continued support is much

appreciated.

Stay positive, stay strong and stay safe.

To the brave and the faithful, nothing is

impossible.

Sean McCullough

President Munster Branch IRFU

As normal, for the moment at least, we will be

in the comfort of our living rooms watching the

game and wishing that we were in Thomond

President: Sean McCullough | Vice President: Ger McNamara | Junior Vice President: Michael Carroll

Hon. Secretary: Muiris Mahon| Hon. Treasurer: Tom Kinirons

Chief Executive Officer: Dr. Ian Flanagan | Head Coach: Johann van Graan | Team Manager: Niall O’Donovan

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© 2020 adidas AG


EVERY FIXTURE

EVERY TRY

EVERY TACKLE

WHY IT MATTERS

EIMEAR CONSIDINE | IRELAND & MUNSTER

From left: Máire Treasa Ní Dubhbgaill, Máire Ní Bhraonáin, Deirbhile Níc Bháird, Jenny Murphy, Eimear Considine

ALL IN

ONE APP

Whether it’s international rugby or live

broadcasting, nobody gets picked unless

they’re good enough. Every team I’ve

been on has been selected solely on

merit.

It was no different last Sunday when I was

part of TG4’s all-female talent on their

Leinster v Cardiff Blues broadcast for the

Guinness PRO14. Yes, it was historic to see

an all-female team and we all felt great

pride (and pressure!), but every person

had proven they were right for the job.

Quite rightly, TG4 has picked up a lot of

positive attention and hopefully this is a

step in the right direction towards a new

normal, where fans get opinions, analysis

and commentary from people who have

the experience to provide the insights –

regardless of gender.

I can’t imagine what my young teenage

self would have made of this. When I look

back to that time in Ireland, I can only

think of Sonia O’Sullivan competing at the

Olympics as a role model for girls. Now,

women’s international sports have such

a greater platform and aspiring female

athletes today have so many stars to look

up to.

Twenty years ago, there were very few

Katie Taylors, Emily Scarratts, Serena

Williams or Megan Rapinoes like we

have today – people who have become

household names.

None of this happens overnight. Women’s

sport and female athletes have moved out

of the shadows and into the same arenas

and stadiums as their male counterparts

through support from clubs, sports

organisations, broadcasters and sponsors.

It’s proven now that if you show women’s

sport in prime-time slots, people will

watch.

For those of you from outside Ireland,

TG4 are an Irish-language station that

have been very progressive in their

broadcasting of women’s sport and

promoting female talent for over 20 years.

Their support of Gaelic football has led

to record attendances for women’s finals

and they have been keen to put strong,

capable women on their rugby broadcasts

for a number of seasons now. In Ireland,

they have certainly been part of the first

waves of momentum we see today.

An all-female line-up was not about

courting publicity. I’ve been involved for

three years with TG4 and during that time

they have assembled and developed the

talent to make it work.

Our leading host, Máire Treasa Ní

Dubhbgaill is a hugely recognisable face in

Irish sports broadcasting and she has been

phenomenal at her job for over a decade.

Deirbhile Níc Bháird has played in the

backs and the forwards, played for Ireland,

played Sevens and she has an insight that

very few can provide.

Jenny Murphy conducted interviews

and provided analysis and she has an

accomplished rugby CV having won a

Grand Slam, played Sevens for Ireland

and represented the Baa-Baas. Máire

Ní Bhraonáin, who works at Clongowes

College where she gets to see the latest

Leinster talent emerge, was our lead

commentator and she has already got

plenty of Guinness PRO14 games under

her belt now. Our team at the RDS was

well proven, that’s for sure.

Earlier, I mentioned Emily Scarratt, who is

the most talented player I’ve ever come

across in rugby. When she won the Player

of the Tournament award for the Six

Nations, the announcement was made in

tandem with Antoine Dupont’s win for the

male award. Guinness’ decision to sponsor

the Womens’ Six Nations has massively

helped the profile of women’s rugby in

Europe.

We see it all the time now, especially

with the England national team who play

at Twickenham – usually on the same

day as the mens’ team. Last year another

Irish international, Louise Galvin, and

myself were part of eir Sport’s World Cup

coverage.

I was fortunate to appear in a national TV

advert alongside Tommy Bowe, Gordon

D’Arcy and Peter Stringer – three icons of

Irish rugby, and that again elevated the

perception of female athletes. So much

so, in fact, that because our training

schedule for the national team limited our

appearances – an expectancy was created

and any time we were not involved, fans

were asking about us.

All of this visibility and support is making a

real difference.

My cousin’s daughter, Éowyn, has become

obsessed with rugby because she can

watch the women’s team play on TV. She

can go see Munster and Ireland play live

at proper stadiums that make it a great

day out for families. Ahead of the men’s

World Cup last year the national squad

were doing an open training session in

each province, but when she arrived at the

event in Thomond Park she was distraught

because it was the men’s team and not the

women’s!

That hits home because to her it’s normal to

see women playing elite sport, it’s normal

to see big crowds attending their games

and it’s normal to see female TV analysts.

In Ireland we have the 20x20 campaign

(#CantSeeCantBe) urging everyone

involved in sport to find ways to play their

part and it is great to see TG4 being such

leaders in

this space.

We’ve also

received great

support from

our provinces and sponsors but I would

challenge everyone to ask what more can

they do to raise the profile of women in

sport? What other broadcasters and media

outlets can follow this path?

We’ve proven that if she can see it, she can

be it… but we can’t and we won’t stop there.

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MUNSTER v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB

ROUND 8 PREVIEW

Munster have stormed into an 11-point lead

at the top of Conference B despite having

only played six matches - and will be hoping

to continue an unbeaten start at home this

evening playing a side they have beaten in each

of the teams’ 15 previous meetings.

Johann van Graan’s men saw off Glasgow

Warriors 27-13 on their travels last week and

return to home turf where they have not been

defeated in any tournament in 2020.

at the hands of Ulster and Connacht in their

most recent outings has left them bottom of

Conference A.

Michael Bradley will be hoping his men can

earn what would be only their second victory

away at an Irish province, their first coming

against Connacht in 2018.

Tonight's referee, Welshman

Ben Whitehouse

Zebre impressed with 23-17 victory over

Ospreys earlier in November, but two defeats

CONFERENCE B TABLE

POS TEAM PL W D L BP PTS

1 Munster Rugby 6 6 0 0 3 27

2 Scarlets 7 3 0 4 4 16

3 Connacht Rugby 5 3 0 2 3 15

4 Cardiff Blues 8 3 0 5 2 14

5 Edinburgh Rugby 6 2 0 4 2 10

6 Benetton Rugby 6 0 0 6 3 3

HEAD TO HEAD 15 0 0

Munster wins

Zebre wins

Draws

MATCH FACTS

Munster have won their last 24 fixtures

against Italian opponents in all tournaments.

Zebre have been defeated in each of the

last three rounds of the Championship since

beating Ospreys in Parma on 2 November.

• The last time that Zebre won outside Italy

in the Guinness PRO14 was on a trip to

Dragons in November 2019, whilst their only

previous victory away at an Irish province

was on a visit to Connacht in February 2018.

Munster have won all 15 previous matches

they have played against Zebre and 13 of

those with a try bonus point.

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MUNSTER v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB | 30.11.20 | THOMOND PARK

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Shane Daly and Soso

Matiashvili of Georgia

RECOVER LIKE A PRO

DEBUT FOR DALY

IN WIN OVER GEORGIA

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Shane Daly became Munster’s latest senior

international when he came off the bench after

62 minutes to win his first cap against Georgia

yesterday, replacing his Munster team-mate

Keith Earls.

Daly was one of eight Munster players

involved in the 23-10 win, with Chris Farrell,

Conor Murray, Tadhg Beirne and CJ Stander

all on the starting line-up alongside Earls, with

Daly, John Ryan, and Peter O’Mahony involved

off the bench.

Ireland opened the scoring after 9 mins with

Billy Burns accelerating through a gap to touch

down after great hands from Chris Farrell.

Burns extended Ireland’s lead to 10-0 four

minutes later with a penalty kick.

A stunning individual try from Georgia centre

Kveseladze under the posts saw the visitors

register their first points 16 minutes into

the game, with the conversion leaving the

score line 10-7 as the end of the first quarter

approached.

Burns added another three points after 22

minutes before Hugo Keenan crossed for

Ireland’s second try 11 minutes later which

Burns converted to put Ireland 20-7 ahead.

While Stuart McCloskey and James Ryan both

crossed the line before the end of the first half,

neither try was given.

Half-time changes saw John Ryan entering the

fray for the second half.

Georgia added three points 7 minutes after

the break to bring the score to 20-10, with

replacement flyhalf Ross Byrne slotting over

a penalty after 58 minutes to stretch Ireland’s

lead to 23-10.

Peter O’Mahony came off the bench after 61

minutes, taking over as captain in what was his

72nd appearance in the green jersey.

No more scores were forthcoming in what

proved to be a dogged last quarter, including a

determined effort from Stander who was held

up on the line in the closing stages. Stander

proved top of the stats for carries, with an

outstanding 24 carries and 61 metres in the

game.

Ireland’s final outing in the Autumn Nations

Cup takes place next Saturday in Dublin

against Scotland in the third place play-off. (KO

2.15pm)

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THE INSIDE

TRACK

Matt Gallagher joined Munster during the

summer from Saracens and has already made

an impression in his four appearances with

two tries against Dragons. The versatile back

lined out against Munster in last season’s

Champions Cup in Thomond Park. A former

England U20 and Saracens Academy Player

of the Year, Matt is Irish qualified with

grandparents from Limerick and Derry.

On settling into Limerick…

“I’ve really enjoyed it so far. Obviously coming

over during Covid it has been a bit of a different

setting to other years. But I’ve enjoyed it – the

boys have made me feel really welcome and

I’m happy to be playing a bit of rugby as well.

It’s been tough enough with lockdown, but

I’ve been to Limerick a few times before – my

Granny lives here, so I’ve seen a bit of it before.

The boys have been so welcoming, helping me

out and helping me to settle in – it hasn’t been

as hard as it may seem. I’m in a house with Dan

Goggin at the moment. He’s been helping me

settle in as well. It’s all been good so far.“

On knowing about Munster from a young

age…

“My family are into sport. My family are into

rugby. I went to the European final in Cardiff

in 2006. I was up in the top of the stand. I was

loving it.”

On the win in Glasgow on Monday night…

“The conditions on Monday weren’t the best but

I think the boys in general adapted really well.

We put a lot of pressure on their kicking game.

The boys in the pack especially dominated –

three second rows scoring three of the tries.

Getting the bonus point away in Glasgow is

always a massive thing for us so that was very

good.”

On playing full-back v. on the wing…

“There’s always little subtle differences. I’m

used to playing full back more than on the wing

but wherever Johann wants to put me, I just

want to do my best for the team. My preference

would probably be full back, but I made my

debut at Munster on the wing, I made my debut

at Saracens on the wing. Wherever is best for

the team I’ll step up and play. I’ve played a little

bit at 13 but not for awhile now so mainly wing

and full back.”

On running out in Thomond Park without the

crowds…

“It’s always a little bit difference isn’t it, running

out to an empty stadium. Obviously, you want

the fans there all the time – at the moment

we can’t. The boys on the sideline have been

doing their best to try and create some kind of

atmosphere there but it’s nothing compared to

a packed Thomond Park. Hopefully in the near

future we will be able to get the fans back in.

We know how passionate Munster is and the

fans of Munster. We can’t wait for them to come

back and show them the performances we can

put in for them.”

On playing Zebre this evening…

“We will be sticking to our process. Firstly, we

will be looking to get the win. Anything more

than that is a bonus. We are putting 100% into

this game.”

On Munster’s great start to the season with 6

wins from 6 games…

“We want to keep winning. That’s something

we have been speaking about since I’ve come

here anyway. Johann talks to us about that a

lot. We want to keep our momentum and keep

sticking to our process. We are not going to get

ahead of ourselves and hopefully the winning

streak continues.”

On competition within the squad and taking

his chances during the international window…

“All I can do is play the best that I can when I do

play. Hopefully, that’s good enough to get on the

team when everyone is back. Andrew and Keith

are phenomenal players. I just want to play as

much as I can and hopefully it’s good enough to

play when they are back as well. Shane Daly is

one of my closest mates since I’ve come here.

Obviously delighted for him getting his first

cap with Ireland. He’s been playing really well,

trained really well in lockdown and taken his

opportunities.”

On playing in the PRO14 for the first time…

“It’s a little bit different. Obviously, we travel a

bit more compared to in England, so I’ve been

getting my head around that. We went up to

Glasgow on Monday morning and back on

Monday night after the game. From what I’ve

seen so far, I’ve enjoyed it. It’s competitive. We

have to see how the rest of the season goes and

see how we do, but I’ve enjoyed it so far.”

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MUNSTER v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB | 30.11.20 | THOMOND PARK

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GETTING TO KNOW…

DOB: 03 Mar 2001 (age 19)

Position: No. 8

From: Cork

School: PBC

Academy Year: 1st Year

ALEX

KENDELLEN

Alex Kendellen is a recent addition to the

Greencore Munster Rugby Academy, joining

this summer having led PBC to the Munster

Schools Senior Cup final.

Prior to joining the Academy, he had already

earned a number of representative honours at

provincial and international level. Kendellen

has lined out for the Munster U18s and U19s

and captained the Ireland U18 Schools side in

2019 as well as playing for the Ireland U18 7s

team.

The 19-year-old lined out for Munster A against

Connacht at the Sportsground in September

and has played for Munster at the IRFU 7s

Tournament in recent weeks.

On his rugby pathway…

“I probably started a bit later than most

people. I was 12/13 when I joined Cork Con.

I was going into Pres and kind of fell in love

with the game from then on. I really enjoyed

my six years in Pres playing Junior Cup and

Senior Cup, especially the last couple of years

working with Ger Burke, Cian Bohane and

playing with some of the lads who are in the

Academy now – Jonathan Wren and Sean

French. I played with them when I was in 4th

Year. They’ve been very good to me for the

last couple of years.”

On his East London connections…

“I would have played a lot of soccer and golf

when I was younger. I come from a die-hard

West Ham family. I grew up going across to

Upton Park a lot. Dad is from East London so

that’s the link.”

On his Munster pathway…

“I would have started with the Munster U18s. I

played for a year at that level, and another year

at Ireland U18s. I played two years at Munster

U19s and another year at Ireland U18s. Since

getting an Academy contract, all the lads have

welcomed me in very well and the transition

has been fairly seamless.”

On his first impressions of the Academy…

“Difficult at the start. It was minimal numbers

but it was really enjoyable working with Peter

Malone and Greig Oliver. I got a lot out of it.

The facilities are unbelievable – its second to

none. It has been very good training alongside

the seniors. It has been really enjoyable. I have

learned a lot. It’s extremely competitive and I

think that’s why I have enjoyed it so much.”

On playing with the Munster 7s team…

“I played in the three recent tournaments

as part of the IRFU Academy 7s Series

with Munster 7s. It has been a very good

experience. A completely difference game

but really enjoyable. It was good to get a run

out. There are not many games happening at

the moment, so it was good to get out of the

training mindset and into a match mindset. I

have been finding my feet over the last few

weeks. It’s been extremely competitive, but

I’ve really enjoyed it.”

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MUNSTER v ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB | 30.11.20 | THOMOND PARK

17


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Supporters can join the growing Red Army of over 750 ‘Be There’ portraits at Thomond Park by

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It’s a great way for supporters to be there, be part of match day and show their support for the

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A number of our squad have also gotten involved and ordered pet portraits!

18 WWW.MUNSTERRUGBY.IE

MUNSTER v ZEBRE EDINBURGH RUGBY | 10.10.20 CLUB | 30.11.20 | THOMOND | THOMOND PARK PARK

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STEPHEN ARCHER

Prop

29.01.88

H: 1.88m

W: 120.91kg

Hons: Ire (2 caps)

Hooker

06.08.99

H:1.83m

W: 98kg

Hons: Ire U20

DIARMUID BARRON

TADHG BEIRNE

Lock / Back Row

08.01.92

H: 1.98 m

W: 113.18 kg

Hons: Ire (17 caps)

Flanker

15.02.91

H: 1.76 m

W: 98 kg

Hons: ~

CHRIS CLOETE

Back Row

11.12.1997

H: 1.98m

W: 110kg

Hons: Ire U20

GAVIN COOMBES

JAMES CRONIN

Prop

23.11.90

H: 1.80 m

W: 113 kg

Hons: Ire (3 caps)

JOEY CARBERY

Fly Half

01.11.95

H: 1.83 m

W: 85kg

Hons: Ire (22 caps)

Scrum Half

19.04.99

H: 1.65 m

W: 75kg

Hons: Ire U20

CRAIG CASEY

ANDREW CONWAY

Full Back / Wing

11.07.91

H: 1.80 m

W: 89 kg

Hons: Ire (24 caps)

LIAM COOMBES

Full Back / Wing

01.05.97

H: 1.91m

W: 89 kg

Hons: Ire U20

Scrum Half

08.12.92

H: 1.73 m

W: 83 kg

Hons: Ire Clubs

NEIL CRONIN

Wing / Centre

19.12.96

H: 1.91 m

W: 91 kg

Hons: Ire (1 cap)

SHANE DALY

Lock / Back Row

03.08.85

H: 1.91 m

W: 111 kg

Hons: Ire (1 cap)

BILLY HOLLAND

DAVE KILCOYNE

Prop

14.12.88

H: 1.83 m

W: 112 kg

Hons: Ire (39 caps)

JEAN KLEYN

Lock

26.08.93

H: 2.03 m

W: 125 kg

Hons: Ire (5 caps)

Prop

06.04.99

H: 1.85m

W: 115kg

Hons: ~

KEYNAN KNOX

Prop

22.07.95

H: 1.85 m

W: 120 kg

Hons: Ire U20

JEREMY LOUGHMAN

Hooker

12.10.92

H: 1.84 m

W: 108 kg

Hons: NZ U20

RHYS MARSHALL

DAMIAN DE ALLENDE

Centre

25/11/1991

H: 1.91 m

W: 105 kg

Hons: SA (47 caps)

KEITH EARLS

Universal Back

02.10.87

H: 1.78 m

W: 90 kg

Hons: Ire (87 caps)

CHRIS FARRELL

Centre

16.03.93

H: 1.93 m

W: 110 kg

Hons: Ire (13 caps)

Full Back

26.10.96

H:1.85m

W: 95 kg

Hons: Eng U20

MATT GALLAGHER

Centre

10.12.94

H: 1.85 m

W: 100 kg

Hons: Ire U20

DAN GOGGIN

Full Back

28.06.94

H: 1.91 m

W: 93 kg

Hons: Ire (1 cap)

MIKE HALEY

Hooker

16.04.91

H: 1.80 m

W: 107 kg

Hons: Ire U19

KEVIN O’BYRNE

Prop

13.07.95

H: 1.78 m

W: 110 kg

Hons: Ire U20

LIAM O’CONNOR

TOMMY O’DONNELL

Back Row

21.05.87

H: 1.85 m

W: 107 kg

Hons: Ire (12 caps)

JACK O’DONOGHUE

Back Row

08.02.94

H: 1.91 m

W: 107 kg

Hons: Ire (2 caps)

PETER O’MAHONY

Back Row

17.09.89

H: 1.91 m

W: 106 kg

Hons: Ire (72 caps)

Back Row

01.10.98

H: 1.88m

W: 100kg

Hons: Ire U20

JACK O’SULLIVAN

JJ HANRAHAN

Fly Half / Centre

27.07.92

H: 1.83 m

W: 93 kg

Hons: Emerging Ireland

Scrum Half

25.03.95

H: 1.8m

W: 84 kg

Hons: Ire U20

NICK MCCARTHY

Centre

07.10.97

H: 1.88m

W: 95kg

Hons: Ire U20

ALEX MCHENRY

CONOR MURRAY

Scrum Half

20.04.89

H: 1.88 m

W: 94 kg

Hons: Ire (86 caps)

Wing

08.08.97

H: 1.78 m

W: 90 kg

Hons: Ire U20

CALVIN NASH

RORY SCANNELL

Centre

22.12.93

H: 1.80 m

W: 98 kg

Hons: Ire (3 caps)

JOHN RYAN

Prop

02.08.88

H: 1.83 m

W: 117 kg

Hons: Ire (22 caps)

Prop

28.10.97

H:1.83m

W: 123.18kg

Hons: USA U20

ROMAN SALANOA

NIALL SCANNELL

Hooker

08.04.92

H: 1.85 m

W: 109 kg

Hons: Ire (20 caps)

RG SNYMAN

Lock

29.01.95

H: 2.06 m

W: 116 kg

Hons: SA (23 caps)

CJ STANDER

Back Row

05.04.90

H: 1.85 m

W: 114 kg

Hons: Ire (45 caps)

Lock

11.12.97

H:1.93 m

W: 111.82 kg

Hons: Ire U20

FINEEN WYCHERLEY

Wing

05.05.93

H: 1.85 m

W: 95 kg

Hons: Ire (3 caps)

DARREN SWEETNAM

FORWARDS

BACKS

Munster Rugby Squad - 2020/21 Season

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MUNSTER RUGBY

STARTING XV

ZEBRE RUGBY CLUB

STARTING XV

Josh Wycherley Rhys Marshall Stephen Archer

Fineen

Billy Holland (C)

Wycheley

Riccardo

Brugnara

Marco

Manfredi

Alexandru

Tarus

Gabriele

Venditti

Leonard

Krumov

Jack

O'Donoghue (C)

Chris Cloete

Gavin Coombes

Nick McCarthy

JJ Hanrahan

Mick Kearney

Alessandro

Mordacci

Lorenzo

Masselli

Alessandro

Fusco

Paolo Pescetto

Darren

Sweetnam

Damian de

Allende

Dan Goggin

Calvin Nash

Matt Gallagher

Pierre Bruno

Enrico Lucchin

Giulio

Bisegni (C)

Giovanni

D'Onofrio

Junior Laloifi

#MUNvZEB

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

MATCH OFFICIALS

Referee: Ben Whitehouse (WRU)

AR1: Andy Brace (IRFU)

AR2: Eoghan Cross (IRFU)

TMO: Joy Neville (IRFU)

Replacements

16. Diarmuid Barron 17. Liam O’Connor 18. Keynan Knox 19. Thomas Ahern

20. Jack Daly 21. Craig Casey 22. Ben Healy 23. Sean French

Replacements

16. Massimo Ceciliani 17. Andrea Lovotti 18. Matteo Nocera 19. Andrea Chianucci

20. Oliviero Fabiani 21. Simone Marinaro 22. Alessandro Forcucci 23. Jamie Elliott

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THE LOWDOWN

THE FORM GUIDE

Zebre’s standout result to date this

season was a 23-17 win over Ospreys in

Round 4, also running Scarlets close the

following week as they lost out by just one

point at Parc y Scarlets. Their opening

game against Cardiff saw the Welsh side

win 16-6 in Parma, with the Dragons

winning 26-18 in Round 2. In Dublin in

Round 3, Leinster notched up 63 points

to Zebre’s 8. In recent weeks, Zebre have

faced both Ulster and Connacht, both of

whom have racked up bonus point wins

in the process.

What is clear is that Zebre are scoring

tries and certainly capable of pushing

teams hard – just ask Ospreys and

Scarlets. Whilst they have scored tries in

all games bar their opening round defeat

to Cardiff, they have leaked 34 tries in 7

games.

Some familiar faces in their ranks include

former Munster lock Ian Nagle and his

teammate at Leinster Mick Kearney who

also played almost 70 times for Connacht.

THE COACHING TICKET

Michael Bradley

Former Munster and Ireland international

Michael Bradley has been at the helm of

the coaching team in Parma since 2017.

Scrum half Bradley was capped 40 times

for Ireland between 1984 and 1995. He

moved into coaching in 2002, coaching

the Ireland U21s in 2002 and taking over

as head coach of Connacht and the Ireland

A team in 2003, where he remained for

7 years. He joined the Georgian national

team for 2010-2011 before becoming

head coach of Edinburgh in 2011. Periods

with Scotland A, the Georgian national

team and CSM Bucharest followed

before he was appointed head coach of

Zebre ahead of the 2017-18 season. Fabio

Roselli and Andrea Moretti joined the

coaching ticket in the summer – both had

been working with the Italy U20s side.

ONE TO WATCH

ONE TO WATCH

Junior Laloifi

26-year-old Samoan Junior Laloifi is a

former Australian Schools and Australian

7s international and lines out at full

back today. The versatile back made the

move to Italy last year and has made 15

appearances to date, including a Man

of the Match performance against the

Cheetahs in January. Coming into this

round, he had gained 292 metres in 6

appearances this season – 4th overall in

the tournament.

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NO STOPPING BREEN

Enya in action against Ulster in 2019

Ireland international and Munster centre Enya

Breen recently spoke to Irish Rugby about

what has been a whirlwind two years for the

Skibbereen woman as she established herself

on the international stage.

21-year-old Breen made her Ireland debut as a

19-year-old against France during the 2019 Six

Nations and she has since earned eight caps

for her country.

“Last year was a bit of a whirlwind for me but

it has been really good to settle down this year

and get more confident, more game-time, just

building into myself really,” Breen told Irish

Rugby.

“I feel like I’m improving week on week and

with these great players around me, it’s just

been great for me.”

Breen is part of a strong Munster contingent

in Adam Griggs’ Ireland squad and her rugby

journey began by playing minis with Carrigaline

before continuing her development with

Bantry Bay.

She recalls how she swiftly progressed

through the Munster pathway which ultimately

led to international honours.

“I started with club and then went from there

into Munster U18s. My second year in the

Munster U18s I was on the underage Sevens

as well. And then, I played with them for two

years, with the Munster U18s and 15s as well.

I just made the progression into the Munster

seniors and into here (Ireland)!”

Breen added: “The pathway has proven to

be great. You have players like Beibhinn (Parsons),

Dorothy Wall and Emily Lane making

ground in the Sevens at the moment. The pathway

is there and it’s bringing out great talent.

Hopefully, it’s the start of many and there will

be more names in the future that will be big.”

Although it has been a hugely successful year

for Breen as she established herself in Ireland’s

midfield, she is determined to continue to

grow as a player and earn more caps for her

country.

“Well, I just want to keep improving. I want to

be the best player that I can be. Yes, the dream

was always to play for Ireland but now the

goalposts had to move. I want to keep playing

in this green jersey for as long as I can. I just

want to be the best player that I can be.”

When the UL Bohemians club woman was

asked what she would tell any aspiring young

woman who has dreams of playing at the highest

level, her advice was simple – work hard

and believe in yourself.

“Just back yourself and go after it. This has

been my dream since I was a kid. It’s all I’ve

ever wanted. I’ve worked hard. I think you

just have to back yourself and absolutely go for

it because, at the end of the day, hard work will

get you there.”

"I think you just have to back yourself and absolutely go for it

because, at the end of the day, hard work will get you there.”

Enya playing for Ireland against Wales in 2019

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STAND UP

AND FIGHT

RUGBY DEVELOPMENT NEWS

weekend, so if you’re interested in getting involved

in refereeing, please contact Chris Harrington

chris.harrington@irfu.ie.

RUGBY’S ROLE IN KEEPING CHILDREN ACTIVE

Eddie Hogan O'Connell

MAR WELCOMES NEW TRIAL MEMBERS

The IRFU new members induction course for

the Munster Association of Referees took place

on Saturday, October 31 last via Microsoft Teams.

25 people, including five females, took part in

the course which was conducted by the IRFU’s

Referee Development Manager for Munster, Chris

Harrington.

Due to government restrictions, attendees

completed pre-course modules such as Law &

Concussion before the Microsoft Teams event took

place. There was great interaction and enthusiasm

from all of those who attended and it is pleasing

that 21 of the 25 who attended have now graduated

to becoming Trial Members with the Munster

Association of Referees. These new members have

already attended their weekly meeting and trial

member workshop.

Munster Rugby Development staff recently

paid a visit to Tralee RFC to assist coaches

in implementing skills sessions for the club’s

U12s during the Level 5 restrictions.

Due to these restrictions, training must be altered

so that it is non-contact with many sessions

consisting of catch-pass and evasion games.

Not only is it important to focus on skill work

but making sure that children continue to have

an outlet and some level of structure in their lives

is key as Club & Community Rugby Officer Brian

O’Dowd explains:

“It’s hugely important for the clubs but for the

kids, for their own mental health, getting them

out, keeping them active, engaging them with a

ball with different skills instead of sitting at home

running up the walls. Basically, it’s just to get them

out and keep them somewhat in a normal routine.”

Munster Rugby Development staff have continued

this work throughout the province for a range of

clubs and schools.

A special mention must go to the Club Referee

Coordinators who played a major role in this

recruitment campaign. The clubs which were

represented included Young Munster, UL

Bohemians, Ballincollig, Old Crescent, Fermoy,

Bruff, St. Senan’s, Crosshaven, Shannon, Killarney,

Kilrush, Ennis, Cork Constitution, Mallow,

Dungarvan, Midleton, Fethard & District, Clonmel

and Newcastle West.

Referees are vital to ensuring games continue to

take place in Munster. Unfortunately, there are not

enough MAR referees to officiate at all games every

#MunsterStartsHere

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With 5 of the province’s 15 Academy players

already featuring in the Guinness PRO14 this

season, and potential PRO14 debuts tonight for

Jack Daly and Sean French if sprung from the

bench, there’s a lot of positivity coming from

the Greencore Munster Rugby Academy.

Elite Player Development Manager Peter

Malone spoke earlier this week on the current

state of play for the Academy, adapting to

Covid-19 measures and provided an update on

current injuries.

On the Academy players making their mark in

the PRO14...

"We’ve said since the return of rugby in the

summer that the Covid situation is going to take

us all to new places and we have to adapt as

best we can.

"I’m very proud of how the Academy guys have

stood up and trained very well, supported the

senior squad and a lot of them are pushing very

hard for inclusion to senior squads on merit.

"Obviously, Ben Healy is the standout, but you

look at guys like Josh Wycherley, John Hodnett

and Tom Ahern coming on for his debut as well.

"Then there are recent Academy graduates, it’s

great to see guys who were with us a year or

two ago now turning into senior leaders in the

squad.

"Guys like Craig Casey and Gavin Coombes are

stepping up so that’s very positive and I think

it bodes well for Munster that guys from the

Academy are moving into leadership roles in

the senior squad pretty quickly.

"And for the guys in the Academy, they can see

that if they are training hard and play well, they’ll

get their opportunity and it’s a great carrot for

players to have."

On the lack of AIL rugby...

"It is disappointing that there isn’t AIL rugby but

it’s very understandable in the circumstances.

There will also be restrictions on guys playing

AIL rugby with players crossing over bubbles.

"The plan at the moment is to play two ‘A’

Interpro fixtures in December to give as many

players as possible game-time.

"In fairness, I think most of the Academy guys

have been in the mix for PRO14 selection, bar

the injured players."

On additional training for Academy players...

"Along with training with the seniors, they also

work with Greig Oliver and myself pre- and

post-session on their work-on areas with catchpass,

tackle technique and so on.

"They’re getting the best of both worlds trainingwise

because they’re still doing their individual

skills programme with us and training with the

seniors.

"They are learning and developing the whole

time and it is a very mature Academy group."

38958

ACADEMY PLAYERS

STEPPING UP

On John Hodnett’s unfortunate achilles

injury...

"It's very disappointing for John, he was on a

great run of form and had taken his opportunity

with the senior squad and he had a few big

performances.

"The surgery went well though and he’s a very

adaptable fella, he’s in good form and looking

forward to getting going with the rehab."

Injury update...

"James French (neck) has been back to full

contact training and he will come back into

contention in December. The operation went

well, and he went extremely well in his rehab,

he worked very hard with the S&C and rugby

staff to get back in good condition and he has

been back scrummaging since last week.

"Eoghan Clarke (hooker) has had a calf issue

that has dragged on for him unfortunately and

he’s unavailable for the coming weeks."

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GET INVOLVED

FOLLOW

ALL THE

ACTION

@PRO14Official

@PRO14Official

@PRO14Official

@PRO14Rugby

@PRO14Rugby

@PRO14Rugby

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FINEEN

WYCHERLEY5

Passes completed: 33

Metres gained: 136

Carries: 108

Tackles: 143

Lineout wins: 49

Lineout steals: 3

Defenders beaten: 4

Fineen Wycherley has made five appearances in red this season, scoring a try in the hard-fought

win against Glasgow Warriors last Monday night. An impressive start to this season saw the

versatile back row/lock included in the Ireland training camp in October. The Bantry native has

played a total of 46 times for Munster after making his debut against Cardiff Blues in March 2017.

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CLANCY CALLS TIME

ON INCREDIBLE CAREER

professional games between refereeing and

assistant refereeing and even TMO the odd

time, that there’s such a wealth of incredible

memories down through the years that I have

been very, very lucky.”

That would be the making of a good book. “I’d

say a few fellas would be worried all right,” he

laughs.

When we ask Clancy what were his standout

matches that he had the pleasure of refereeing,

it will come as no surprise that the Limerick man

details numerous examples.

The 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand will

always be special as Clancy had the privilege of

officiating the opening game of that tournament

– the All Blacks and Tonga on the hallowed turf

of Eden Park.

“The match was between New Zealand and

Tonga, but you saw people there wearing

Ireland jerseys, Australian jersey, Argentina

jerseys. It hit home to me how important this

game was from a world rugby perspective."

“We’re in a really good place now and I think

that has been reflected in the strides that have

been made by the likes of Andy Brace and

Frank Murphy. Obviously, Joy Neville is World

Referee of the Year and she’ll go on to fantastic

things as well. Sean Gallagher as well is making

great strides.”

Although Clancy will no longer be involved in

the professional side of the game, he is eager

to give back to something which has provided

him with so much. Depending on the time

commitments required for his new job in the

Civil Service, the Limerick man would like to

return to refereeing in the Munster Junior

League and perhaps the All Ireland League.

125 Guinness PRO14 fixtures, 75 Heineken

Champions Cup fixtures, 46 internationals, Six

Nations championships, Rugby Championships,

two Rugby World Cups – Clancy has seen and

experienced it all.

It’s these experiences and memories which the

43-year-old will look back on fondly once he

finally steps away from the pro game. Although

Clancy refereed his last professional game last

month, he has had assistant refereeing gigs in

November before stepping away from the pro

game altogether.

“It’s just been unbelievable. What rugby has

given me over the course of the past 20 years

as regards travelling the world and the people

that I have met, the experiences that I’ve had

along the way. Just to be involved at the highest

level of the game has been incredible. I keep

a daily diary for an everyday week. I haven’t

even got a chance to go back through it, but

you can imagine over the course of over 500

Community Games was where Clancy got his

first taste of the oval ball before he went through

the underage grades at Bruff RFC. Clancy also

played during his teenage years at the famed

Limerick rugby nursery of St. Munchin’s College

in Corbally. One of Clancy’s fondest memories

as a player was winning the Munster Junior

Challenge Cup in 1998.

Trying to juggle his love of rugby and hurling

with the addition of picking up the “odd niggle”

saw Clancy drift away from the oval ball

somewhat until his father, Seoirse, who was a

referee himself in the 80s, encouraged his son

to take up a role with the whistle.

Clancy credits the mentoring he received from

notable figures within the Munster Association

of Referees as crucial in his development during

the early years of his refereeing career.

“We had really good guys in the Munster

Association of Referees with regards to

coaching and mentoring you along. People

like Johnny Cole, Noel Moore, ‘Wiry’ Sexton –

fellas like that who put in a huge amount of time

into us. I know I’m leaving fellas out there but

down in Cork, guys like Stan Fuller and people

like that, Ronnie McDowell as well who would

always have your back and bring you on as best

you could. I’m forever grateful to those lads.”

One occasion which Clancy will never forget

took place a lot closer to home. Munster against

the All Blacks in 2008 for the opening of the

redeveloped Thomond Park.

“One of the most incredible occasions was when

Munster played the All Blacks for the opening of

Thomond Park. I’ll just never forget that. I was

the fourth official for the game. We got to be at

pitch level when all of this was happening with

the Munster haka, the New Zealand haka, the

minute silence for Shane Geoghegan, god rest

him, the match ball being dropped down by

helicopter, the crowd.

“That was just off the charts for me. I’ll never

forget it. I was doing fourth official, like, but I

remember walking back to the dugout, I got

pins and needles in my hands, even. It was

an experience I never had before or since at a

rugby ground. People were saying that it was

some occasion. You’d think the match would

never live up to that after that but my god, it

certainly did.”

As Clancy steps away from the professional

refereeing bubble, he reflects on the excellent

progress that has been made at a provincial and

national level in developing the next generation

of elite referees in this country.

One thing is for sure, the Limerick native is

looking forward to having a more traditional

schedule, including those weekends enjoying

sport from a different perspective.

“I was chatting to my wife there at the weekend

and she was saying that she’s looking forward to

seeing a game where it’s not stopped, started,

rewound back a 100 times before we get to the

end of the first half. I’m looking forward to that

myself!”

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FIXTURES & RESULTS 2020/21

Date Fixture Where to watch

Sat 3 Oct Scarlets 27-30 Munster Parc y Scarlets

Sat 10 Oct Munster 25-23 Edinburgh Rugby Thomond Park

Mon 26 Oct Munster 38 - 27 Cardiff Blues eir Sport, TG4, Premier Sports

Sun 1 Nov Dragons 16 - 28 Munster eir Sport, Premier Sports

Sat 7 Nov Benetton Rugby v Munster Match Postponed

Sun 15 Nov Munster 38-22 Ospreys eir Sport, S4C, Premier Sports

Mon 23 Nov Glasgow Warriors 13-27 Munster Premier Sports, eir Sport

Mon 30 Nov | 8:15pm Munster v Zebre Rugby Club eir Sport, Premier Sports

Sun 13 Dec | 5.30pm Munster v Harlequins BT Sport, beIN Sports

Sat 19 Dec | 6.30pm Clermont Auvergne v Munster beIN Sports, BT Sport

Sat 26 Dec | 7.35pm Munster v Leinster eir Sport, Premier Sports

Sat 02 Jan | 5.15pm Ulster v Munster eir Sport, Premier Sports

Sat 09 Jan | 7.35pm Connacht v Munster eir Sport, TG4, Premier Sports

Sat 16 Jan | 5.30pm Munster v Clermont Auvergne BT Sport, beIN Sports

Sat 23 Jan | 5.30pm Harlequins v Munster BT Sport, beIN Sports

Gilbert x Munster Programme Advert_165x12mm_5mm Bleed.pdf 1 06/10/2020 10:07

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