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Munster deny crisis as players sent damning report


Munster coach Anthony Foley. Picture credit: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

Munster coach Anthony Foley. Picture credit: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE


Munster coach Anthony Foley. Picture credit: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

MUNSTER have played down the effect of a highly sensitive and critical player review document which was accidentally distributed to the whole squad last week.

On Wednesday, the report, detailing comments on each player, was emailed to all squad members. Some of the comments were highly critical, and, in a couple of instances, personalised, the Sunday Independent understands.

The document also revealed through colour-coding whether the management considered each player to be first choice or second choice and, in the case of one player, questioned why he was even in the squad at all. It is understood the issue of contracts was also mentioned.

“It was an attachment to a weekly schedule and it was not supposed to go out,” a senior source in Munster said yesterday.

“But it’s not a crisis or anything like it. The senior players met to talk about it, and, yes, it might have been hurtful to one or two players, but we’ve moved on.

“We’ve spoken to the players, and the vast majority have accepted it was a mistake and have put it behind us. In no way did it have any negative effect on the way we played last night (against London Irish on Friday) — maybe the opposite in that they pulled together.”

The source, who did not wish to be named, declined to mention those players for whom it may still be an issue.

He also denied that a senior player had been accused in the document, which he said was updated on a weekly basis, of being on “a gravy train”, and that another was classed as “mentally weak”.

“Anthony (Foley) spoke to the group and said that it is what it is and it shouldn’t have happened, rather than try to bullshit the players,” the source added.

Inescapably, it makes for a difficult start to Foley’s tenure as head coach, having succeeded Rob Penney after two seasons as his assistant.

Munster have also parted company with their head of fitness Adam Trypas, who took up the role in January.

He will be succeeded by Aled Walters, the senior strength and conditioning coach, who is going into his third season with the province.

Sunday Indo Sport