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Munster set to name new defence coach

Munster appear set to name South African JP Ferreira as their next defence coach after his Super Rugby franchise the Golden Lions omitted him from their 2018 coaching list, writes Simon Lewis

The Lions revealed their rugby management structure for next year, as CEO Rudolf Straeuli disclosed Ferreira was in talks with Munster regarding the vacancy created by the return to South Africa of Jacques Nienaber.

Ferreira, who has been with the Lions since 2007 and helped them reach the 2016 Super Rugby final, worked with new Munster head coach Johann van Graan during the Springboks’ 2016 winter tour and, like his potential next boss, started his coaching career as a video analyst.

Van Graan would not confirm a replacement had been found and said Ireland defence coach Andy Farrell would return to Limerick on Tuesdays and Wednesdays to help preparations for the back-to-back Champions Cup games with Leicester Tigers in the next two weeks, having performed the role last week.

“I said last week that we are looking to fill the position of defence coach as soon as possible,” said van Graan yesterday.

“We have got a few names that we are looking at. As soon as I have got more information, we will make an announcement, but we are definitely looking to get a defence coach in as soon as possible.

“Andy Farrell will be in for the next two weeks for two days a week. Same principles as last week. All credit to him for his enthusiasm and what he delivered last week. Fantastic guy. He could be at his home, but he is coming over for two weeks. And thanks to Joe Schmidt for the helping hand.

“He will be in tomorrow (Tuesday) and Wednesday and the same next week. For the foreseeable future, against foreign opposition, he will be part of the coaching team.”

This story first appeared in the Irish Examiner.