Munster Rugby has today confirmed via statement that former captain, and Munster living legend Paul O’Connell is to return to the province in a professional context.
The Limerick native who spent 14 years at Thomond Park has been unveiled as the newest member of the Greencore Munster Rugby Academy taking on an advisory role and will oversee the next wave of generational talent at the province, providing an unprecedented wealth of knowledge and experience in rugby development and practice.
This current arrangement will see O’Connell work with Munster on a part-time basis for a period of 12 months.
Munster Rugby CEO Garrett Fitzgerald said,
“Every club in the world would love to have an iconic figure such as Paul O’Connell involved in their set-up. As a Limerick native and proud Munster and Irishman who has played and led teams for Munster, Ireland and the Lions, we were very eager to secure his services in some capacity.
“We certainly couldn’t let this resource and opportunity go and we are hugely thankful to the Commercial Board for their support in making this a reality.
“An appointment such as this is a further boost to our academy staff and young players, and to the organisation as a whole. As always we continue to strive for best in class and this latest appointment further highlights our ambitions as we embark on a new chapter for the province, operating from our new high performance centre in UL.”
Widely regarded as one of the finest rugby exponents to ever come hail from the Emerald Isle, O’Connell’s pedigree in the game is unquestioned having amassed a seriously impressive repertoire over his long and illustrious career with Munster claiming two Heineken Cups, three league titles and a Celtic Cup; as well as a Grand Slam and two 6 Nations on the international landscape.
A touring member of three Lions tours, ‘Paulie’ captained the side for the 2009 tour of South Africa and was an integral part of the series-winning squad in Australia in 2013.