Five shortlisted as Munster step up search for new boss
The search for Tony McGahan's successor has been narrowed down to five and Munster are hopeful of appointing their new coach by the end of April.
Interviews are to be arranged over the next week or so with the five who have been shortlisted -- a combination of Irish and overseas candidates; a Munster sub-committee is set to make a recommendation to the IRFU by the end of next month.
And Munster CEO Garrett Fitzgerald has moved to rubbish reports that McGahan had only been offered a one-year contract extension.
"We offered Tony a two-year renewal of contract. On looking at his own domestic situation, he's here six or seven years and he has a young family, he asked that we consider a one-year deal with an option on a second year. So we agreed to that, terms were agreed in all those situations," he said.
"Then an offer was put in front of Tony from Australia which he obviously couldn't turn down, which we fully understand."
The Munster CEO said that an extensive process has been carried out to find McGahan's successor, which included advice from experts in sports management and HR.
Fitzgerald is joined on the sub-committee by former Munster wing John Kelly, who is on the provincial team management board, Munster junior vice president John Hartery from Thomond RFC and former president Declan Madden from Garryowen. "The next step is to set dates for interviews and I hope that will happen in the next 10 days," added Fitzgerald.
"There may be an issue around availability of candidates for interview. If some of them are from the sourthern hemisphere then they may have Super 15 commitments and the like.
"Second interviews may be required and then a final recommendation will be made, probably towards the end of April, to the IRFU, which is the ultimate employer."