The Leinster Academy panel for the 2011/12 season has been named and includes a number of Ireland Under-20 players who competed in the recent IRB Junior World Championship in Italy.
In all there are 18 players in the Leinster Academy including young back rower Jordi Murphy, who captained Ireland Under-20s during the IRB Junior World Championship last month.
The province’s Academy programme is set out over three years where all of the players will aim to ultimately earn a professional contract.
Amongst the most recent graduates are Andrew Conway, Brendan Macken and Jack McGrath who have all gone on to feature for the Leinster senior side of late.
Other past graduates from the Leinster Academy system include the likes of Ireland internationals Fergus McFadden, Kevin McLaughlin, Sean O’Brien, Rhys Ruddock, Jonathan Sexton and Devin Toner, as well as Fionn Carr and Jamie Hagan who have rejoined the province ahead of the new season.
In addition to each Academy player’s third level commitments, they will also complete a supplementary HETAC (Higher Education & Training Awards Council) course covering modules such as Rugby, Fitness, Psychology and Lifestyle.
Academy Manager Colin McEntee oversees the day-to-day running of the Leinster Academy.
2011/12 LEINSTER ACADEMY PANEL:
YEAR 1: Andrew Boyle (winger), Jordan Coghlan (number 8), David Doyle (hooker), Tadhg Furlong (prop), Conor Gilsenan (back rower), Luke McGrath (scrum half), Martin Moore (prop), Colm O’Shea (centre), Michael Sherlock (centre), James Tracy (prop)
YEAR 2: Sam Coghlan-Murray (winger), Darren Hudson (winger), Ben Marshall (back rower), Jordi Murphy (back rower), Jack O’Connell (prop), Noel Reid (out-half)
YEAR 3: Ciaran Ruddock (lock), Eamonn Sheridan (centre)