Graham Rowntree Explains How His Move To Munster Came About

Proud.

Incoming Munster forwards coach Graham Rowntree has explained how his move to the southern province came about in an interesting chat on The Rugby Pod this week.

Rowntree is currently with Georgia ahead of the World Cup and is set to link up with Munster once he’s finished his duties in Japan. The former England and Lions coach will be a direct replacement for Jerry Flannery who left over the summer.

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The 48-year-old says the move came about very quickly after he visited Ireland back in May to discuss the role. he said it immediately struck him that Munster reminded him of his old club Leicester – “a big club” that was “proud” and has ”big support base.”

“I had a few days over there with the family a couple of weeks ago,” Rowntree said.

“Myself and Steve Larkham are coming in to work for Johann van Graan. It came about very quickly in May. Obviously, Jerry [Flannery] and Felix [Jones] decided not to stay, and I spoke to Johann. And I’ve known Johann a long time: I coached against him when he was with South Africa and I was with England.And before I knew it, I was over there meeting everyone.

It struck me — it just felt like my old club, it felt like Leicester: a big club, proud, big support base, and before I knew it, it was done. And I can’t wait, to be honest with you. I can’t wait to get over there. Been over, looked at a house — I’m living near Keith Wood in Killaloe.

“Munster — [European] semi-finals every year and yet they’re still striving. ‘That’s not good enough.’ Today (Monday), we see the Irish World Cup squad announcement and there are 12 guys in there from Munster. It’s a proud day for the province. I’m looking forward to being part of a prestigious club.”