Monday 25 September 2017

IRFU deny Du Randt's Irish scrum coach claims

Hugh Farrelly

Os Du Randt believes he is the man to 'rescue' Ireland's scrum at the World Cup, but the IRFU have rubbished the former Springbok's claims that he is in final negotiations regarding a coaching role in Declan Kidney's management team.

"Ireland aren't happy with their scrumming standards and that's an area they want to improve. We are still negotiating the deal and, hopefully, things will be sorted out soon," Du Randt told South African media. "(Ireland forwards coach) Gert Smal will also help me settle.

"I've worked a lot with him as a player," added the double World Cup-winning prop, who lost his job as South Africa's scrum coach following an alleged late night out before a Test in November.

"I'm looking forward to getting one over the top guys in the Bok coaching team, considering what happened, but it's going to be tough being up against the players."

Greg Feek has been a notable success in his dual role as scrum coach for Leinster and Ireland and is scheduled to oversee Ireland's set-piece up to and through the World Cup, with the IRFU dismissing Du Randt's claims out of hand.

"The IRFU and Ireland team management can confirm that no discussions or negotiations have taken place in relation to Os du Randt joining the coaching staff of the Ireland team," said an IRFU spokesman yesterday.

Meanwhile, Leinster's in-form Ireland props Cian Healy and Mike Ross are expected to be included in the team to take on Ulster in their Magners League semi-final at the RDS tomorrow, while coach Joe Schmidt could also select winger Fergus McFadden, scrum-half Isaac Boss and flanker Shane Jennings.

Those three were on the bench for the Heineken Cup semi-final two weeks ago, but may be given the opportunity to stake their claims for starting spots in the European final against Northampton.

LEINSTER (possible) -- I Nacewa; F McFadden, B O'Driscoll, G D'Arcy, L Fitzgerald; J Sexton, I Boss; C Healy, R Strauss, M Ross; L Cullen (capt), N Hines; S O'Brien, S Jennings, J Heaslip.

Irish Independent

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