McNamara continues with U-20s
The IRFU have been handed a significant boost, with confirmation that Noel McNamara will stay on as Ireland U-20s head coach for a third year.
Having recently been appointed Leinster's Academy manager, there had been doubts over whether McNamara would be persuaded to stay on for another season, but the union have tied him down.
Please log in or register with Independent.ie for free access to this article.
The Clare native oversaw a stunning Six Nations campaign this year, which culminated in Ireland winning the Grand Slam.
McNamara is a highly regarded Irish coach and the fact that he will again work with the country's rising stars is hugely encouraging.
Next season's home Six Nations games will again take place in Irish Independent Park and, with an extended squad having already begun preparations, McNamara is relishing the fresh challenge.
"Any opportunity you get to work with a national team, particularly young players, it's always something that should be relished with great enthusiasm," he said.
"We're really looking forward to the challenges that lie ahead."
Who is your sportstar of the year?
Vote in the Irish Independent Sport Star Awards and you could win the ultimate sports prize.
Prizes include, tickets to Ireland's against Scotland in the Six Nations, All Ireland football and hurling final tickets and much more.