Monday 23 October 2017

UL training centre to be ready by July 2015

Munster's Donncha O'Callaghan, right, James Downey, centre, and strength and rehab coach Aled Walters
Munster's Donncha O'Callaghan, right, James Downey, centre, and strength and rehab coach Aled Walters

John Fallon

Munster expect to move into their new training centre at University of Limerick in the summer of 2015.

A number of small changes to the design have taken place in recent months but Munster Rugby CEO Garrett Fitzgerald has confirmed that they remain on schedule to move in on time for the start of the season after next.

The opening of the single training centre at UL will bring an end to the practice of squad sessions taking place in Cork and Limerick.

They decided towards the end of last season to develop the new training centre in conjunction with UL and work has been ongoing since then on the design.

"Our original plan was to move in there in July 2015 and we still hope to make that deadline.

"There have been a few changes to the plan and the design of the centre is ongoing. It is with the UL planning design architects and is progressing well," said Fitzgerald.

The opening of the new training centre will be a huge development for Munster.

The side will continue to play some Pro12 matches at Musgrave Park in Cork where a redevelopment programme is also being implemented.

Meanwhile, the Munster squad are back in training after a week off and centre James Downey is fully aware they face a crucial month in the Pro12 when players are away on international duty.

The league leaders resume domestic duties next weekend when they host Cardiff Blues on Saturday evening at Thomond Park.

The following week they entertain Zebre at Musgrave Park before two trips to Wales to play Ospreys and Scarlets.

Downey said this block of games during the Six Nations period gives younger players a chance to impress the coaches.

"It is important for the younger players to put their stamp on the team, especially when the international players are away with Ireland," said Downey.

"We're going well, the momentum is there and it is a matter of keeping that momentum going."

Irish Independent

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