Wednesday 18 September 2019

Rassie Erasmus confirms he could leave Munster earlier than planned

Munster director of rugby Rassie Erasmus says he could leave in November
Munster director of rugby Rassie Erasmus says he could leave in November

Dave Kelly

Outgoing Munster coach Rassie Erasmus has admitted he could leave his post before the November international window but the South African insisted that the timing of his departure remains uncertain.

Speaking after supervising his side opened their Champions Cup campaign with an uninspiring 17-17 draw in Castres, Erasmus, who is destined to be replaced by counterpart Johann van Graan, conceded that it depends on whether the new man can get a work permit in time.

"The only people that can give that answer is Garrett [Fitzgerald, Munster CEO] and David Nucifora [IRFU High Performance Director]. There are 60 million people in South Africa and if everybody on that sides opinion is asked you will get a lot of different opinions.

"Now we know Johann van Graan is the new coach and once he and Munster are comfortable then I will leave.

"If that happens before November then I will leave but I will definitely stay to welcome the new coach and help until he takes the reins.

"I don't know when he is coming over here, we are already into work permits and stuff that, and then it is a matter of handing over.

But the only people who can give accurate answers are Garrett and David Nucifora. All the other things on the other side are difficult for me to comment on."

Munster originally stated that Eramsus would be remaining with the province until his contract release clause is triggered on December 31st.

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"That's where people are making assumptions. There are three tough games before that, with Racing 92 next week, and then there's a three-week break.

"It depends on a work permit. If the work permit doesn't come through then definitely I will still be here in December but it comes through and he arrives in the next two or three weeks then it depends how long he, Munster, the players need me to stay."

Erasmus conceded his side tried to "throw away" a bizarre, error-strewn game against the French side at the Stade Pierre Fabre, with the home side missing two kicks in the final two minutes to win the game.

"With seven or eight minutes to go, we were camped on their try-line attempting to get the win and we had a missed penalty there," said Erasmus, after a long-range Ian Keatley effort also missed the target.

"But in the last two or three minutes we definitely tried really hard to throw it away so those last two or three minutes we are not really proud of.

"But ultimately, to come away with two points, it's definitely not one we wanted, we definitely would have loved more. But when we start the week, it's better to see two points on the board rather than none."


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