Munster Rugby and the IRFU can confirm that forwards coach Jerry Flannery and back-line and attack coach Felix Jones will depart the province at the end of the current season.
Both coaches have declined their respective contract offers, and will come to the end of their current contracts in June. Flannery was appointed as scrum coach in 2014 and promoted to forwards coach in 2017. Jones came on board as a technical coach role in 2016, which led to a two-year contact the following summer, overseeing the back-line and attack.
Commenting on today’s news, Munster’s acting CEO Philip Quinn said: “As Johann (van Graan) has noted all along, the province was committed to retaining the services of both Jerry and Felix, and I believe the Professional Game Board made every effort to retain the coaching duo with competitive terms.
While we understand their respective decisions, we are hugely disappointed with the latest development, but wish them every success in the future.
It goes without saying that Jerry and Felix have been great servants to Munster Rugby, from their earlier playing days in red, to forging successful coaching careers in guiding the next generation of Munster players.”
Munster head coach van Graan added: “We will be very disappointed to see Jerry and Felix go at the end of the season. They are both extremely hard-working, dedicated coaches, in addition to being really good guys who have been fantastic to work with.
“As a coaching group we will continue with the same commitment and drive for success as always, working towards our upcoming GUINNESS PRO14 semi-final against Leinster.”
Flannery, the 40-year-old former Munster and Ireland hooker, said: “This has been a dream job for me, to coach Munster Rugby. I want to thank all the players, coaches and staff that I worked with over the years, and also thank the supporters who have always been there for us.
“Leaving the province is not a decision I took lightly, but I look forward to watching the squad go from strength to strength, and wish them continued success.”
Jones, the former Leinster, Munster and Ireland full-back/winger who retired from playing at 28 on medical grounds, commented: “It has been an absolute honour to have played for and to have coached Munster Rugby. I would like to thank the players, coaches, management and fans who have supported me over the last 10 years.
“We will continue our drive to end the season on a high, and I look forward to being a Munster supporter in the future.”
The province has commenced the process of identifying suitable candidates to join head coach van Graan and defence coach JP Ferreira next season.