18 May, 11:09
IRFU Chief Executive Philip Browne has issued a statement following confirmation of Ronan O'Gara's decision to retire from playing professional rugby.
Having watched his youthful side go down 50-19 to Leicester Tigers on Friday, Munster coach Declan Kidney admitted they will "learn from" the heavy defeat.
PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY: Friday, August 26
Leicester Tigers 50 Munster 19, Welford Road
Scorers: Leicester: Tries: Daryl Gibson, Alesana Tuilagi, Sam Vesty, Penalty try, Ephraim Taukafa, Leo Cullen; Cons: Andy Goode 4; Pens: Goode 4
Munster: Try: Penalty try; Con: Jeremy Manning; Pens: Paul Burke 4
Munster, who scored a late penalty try, were comprehensively out-played after a strong opening in which Paul Burke drilled over three penalties. The Tigers, who included former Leinster forwards Leo Cullen and Shane Jennings, hit Munster for six tries in all, including a first one for Cullen on his second start for the club.
Kidney, who is expected to welcome back Marcus Horan, Frankie Sheahan, Denis Leamy, Alan Quinlan, David Wallace, Peter Stringer and Anthony Horgan into his squad for Friday's Celtic League opener against the Borders at Thomond Park (kick-off 7.10pm), was philosophical afterwards.
"A more experienced team punished us for almost all of the mistakes we made. It's a tough venue to play in and we shipped a lot of points," said Kidney.
"But just as the guys enjoyed the win over Northampton, they've got to get over this and learn from it."
Burke and Tigers' fly-half Andy Goode swapped two penalties apiece before Burke managed a 29th-minute monster kick for the lead. However, a try from captain Daryl Gibson, another Goode penalty and an injury-time touch down from winger Alesana Tuilagi put Pat Howard's men 21-9 in front at half-time.
Goode tagged on an immediate penalty after the break, and although Burke landed his fourth successful kick soon after, Munster could not keep up as Tigers cut loose for further tries through full-back Sam Vesty (52 minutes), sub Ephraim Taukafa and Cullen. Goode also added a 57th-minute penalty, and his convert of Cullen's try, which saw the Ireland lock dive under the posts, handed Goode a personal haul of 20 points.
Munster kept hunting for their first try and deservedly got it from a penalty try award from referee Roy Maybank. Sub Jeremy Manning landed the conversion.
LEICESTER TIGERS: Sam Vesty; Alesana Tuilagi, Dan Hipkiss, Daryl Gibson (Capt), Tom Varndell; Andy Goode, Harry Ellis; Michael Holford, George Chuter, Alex Moreno, Jamie Hamilton, Leo Cullen, Will Johnson, Shan Jennings, Brett Deacon.
Replacements used: Leon Lloyd for Hipkiss (49 mins), Martin Corry for Deacon, Ben Kay for Hamilton (both 51), Luke Abraham for Jennings (59), Ephraim Taukafa for Chuter (62) Graham Rowntree for Holford (63).
MUNSTER: Ben Martin; Paul Devlin, John Kelly, Rob Henderson, Mossie Lawlor; Paul Burke, Frank Murphy; Frank Roche, Jerry Flannery, Federico Puccariello, Trevor Hogan, Mike O'Driscoll, John O'Sullivan, Johnny O'Connor, Stephen Keogh (Capt).
Replacements used: Trevor Halstead for Henderson (half-time), Anthony Foley for O'Connor, Jeremy Manning for Burke (both 53 mins), Ian Dowling for Martin (56), Brian Tuohy for Devlin, Denis Fogarty for Flannery (both 63), Mike Prendergast for Murphy (68).
Referee: Roy Maybank (RFU)