Tony Ward: Here's wishing Tonetti success on other fields
Published 25/03/2014 | 02:30
Following the premature retirement of Eoin O'Malley from professional rugby through injury comes the news that Connacht centre Kyle Tonetti has also been forced to call it a day too, at the tender age of 26.
Having coached Kyle at underage level, all I can say (and he was a particularly talented out-half back then) is that what he lacked in tactical kicking, he more than compensated (not unlike Paul Dean at a comparable age) through dexterity of hand, when creating so much time, space and scoring opportunities for others further out the line.
Like the equally talented O'Malley, he is a huge loss to provincial and Irish rugby.
He is, however, a particularly talented cricketer too (having been on scholarship in South Africa in his teens), so without knowing the nitty gritty of the injury perhaps this ill wind could yet blow some good and the IRFU's loss prove Cricket Ireland's gain.