Earls sticking with Munster

Tue, 21 Jan 2014 15:28
Large keithearlsmunster

Keith Earls became the latest Ireland international to avoid the lure of foreign club rugby by signing a new contract with Munster.

Keith Earls became the latest Ireland international to avoid the lure of foreign club rugby by signing a new contract with Munster.

The 26-year-old utility back, who has scored 12 tries in 39 Tests since his Ireland debut in 2008, has signed a new central contract with the Irish Rugby Football Union that will see him stay at Munster until at least 2016.

A versatile performer, who can play on the wing or in the centres, Earls is reported to have rejected offers from clubs in both England and France to remain loyal to Munster.

"I'm delighted to sign a new IRFU contract and to continue representing my province," Earls said.

"This Munster team has shown it has what it takes to compete with the best in Europe and I look forward to playing my role in bringing further success to both Munster and Ireland."

IRFU chief executive Philip Browne added: "Keith is a proven finisher and has shown guile and determination throughout his rugby career for both Munster and Ireland."

Earls's decision follows the IRFU's success in persuading fellow internationals such as Paul O'Connell and Sean O'Brien to continue their careers in Ireland, although Test flyhalf Jonathan Sexton did join Paris-based Racing Metro at the start of this season.

And it is understood that Ireland loose forward Jamie Heaslip, whose contract is up at the end of the current campaign, remains a target for one of France's leading Top 14 clubs.

However, Ireland have largely been successful in ensuring their best players continue to remain with home clubs.

It is a situation in marked contrast to that in Wales where, without an established central contract system, the likes of Mike Phillips, Jamie Roberts and Dan Lydiate have all opted for club careers in France, with more Welsh players set to follow in their footsteps.

AFP

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Fri, 15 December 2017
Ulster v Harlequins 19h45 Kingspan Stadium
Sat, 16 December 2017
Montpellier v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Altrad Stadium
Treviso v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Leinster v Exeter Chiefs 15h15 Aviva Stadium
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Sun, 17 December 2017
Wasps v La Rochelle 13h00 Ricoh Arena
Clermont Auvergne v Saracens 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Ospreys v Northampton Saints 15h15 Liberty Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Munster 17h30 Welford Road
RESULT SCORE
Mon, 11 December 2017
Saracens v Clermont Auvergne 14 | 46
Sun, 10 December 2017
Exeter Chiefs v Leinster 8 | 18
Harlequins v Ulster 5 | 17
La Rochelle v Wasps 49 | 29
Sat, 09 December 2017
Munster v Leicester Tigers 33 | 10
Castres v Racing Metro 16 | 13
Northampton Saints v Ospreys 32 | 43
Toulon v Bath 24 | 20
Scarlets v Treviso 33 | 28
Fri, 08 December 2017
Glasgow Warriors v Montpellier 22 | 29
Sun, 03 December 2017
Harlequins v Saracens 20 | 19
Sat, 02 December 2017
Cheetahs v Scarlets 28 | 21
Munster v Ospreys 36 | 10
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 32 | 25
Treviso v Leinster 10 | 36
PRO14
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Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 10 10 0 0 48
Munster 10 7 0 3 36
Cheetahs 10 6 0 4 29
Cardiff Blues 10 4 0 6 19
Connacht 10 3 0 7 18
Zebre 10 3 0 7 16
Ospreys 10 2 0 8 11
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Scarlets 10 8 0 2 40
Leinster 10 8 0 2 37
Ulster 10 7 1 2 35
Edinburgh 10 6 0 4 28
Treviso 10 3 0 7 15
Dragons 10 2 1 7 13
Kings 10 0 0 10 4