RONAN O'GARA has revealed that he has ambitions to coach Munster, the team he has spent his entire playing career with, when he hangs up his boots.
O'Gara confirmed that he will make his mind up regarding his playing future in the coming weeks as he contemplates the next step in his career and life.
Munster have offered him a new one-year contract – "we are in negotiations" – but he also acknowledges that he needs to expose himself to other rugby cultures if he is to realise his ambition of pursuing a career in coaching.
"I have to go away in order to come back," said O'Gara.
"I want to coach Munster, I'd love to. It's my home team. There are, though, steps I'll have to take before that can happen. So I'll have to go to come back.
"Now I only know one way, the Munster way. In order to be the best possible (coach) you need to see different cultures and different teams and how they operate."
This is the first time O'Gara (below) has revealed his future objective of coaching. What has yet to be determined by the 36-year-old is whether he will start to realise those ambitions at the end of this or next season.
"I don't know if I will play on after this season," said O'Gara, who is Munster's record points scorer and one of the principals behind their successes over the past decade.
"Munster have made an offer. What I have to decide is whether or not I have the hunger to give it 100pc for another season. I genuinely don't know at the moment what I want to do, and it'll be three or four weeks at the earliest before I make a decision.
"In fairness to Munster the goods (offer) are there. It's a question of what I want to do and what I'm prepared to do because it's always 100pc or nothing with me in everything I do."