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Two-time Heineken Cup winner with Munster joins Tipperary backroom team

Tipperary boss Michael Ryan has confirmed Denis Leamy is a part of his coaching staff.

Image: James Crombie/INPHO

TIPPERARY MANAGER MICHAEL Ryan has hailed the influence of former Ireland rugby international Denis Leamy on his Munster senior hurling champions.

Ryan confirmed last night that Tipp native Leamy, a two-time Heineken Cup winner with Munster, is a current member of the Premier County’s backroom team.

Leamy, 34, has gained qualifications in strength training in recent years and has passed on some useful advice from his professional playing days to the Tipp players.

Ryan told Tipp FM’s Extra-Time show last night (Monday): “Denis is sharing his experiences, really and truly.

“He’s an absolute winner and I think he’s a very good influence on our lads. “When we first introduced him to the group, we said ‘welcome to your competition at corner forward!’

“But he’s one of our own, we were delighted to welcome him and he’s a breath of fresh air, coming from a different sporting background and yet a lot of same trials, tribulations, experiences.

“His experience is at the highest level in both club and international rugby.

“He’s just a great guy and a great ambassador for Tipp.

“We were delighted to welcome Denis on board and he’s just a great influence around the place.”

Leamy was capped 57 times by Ireland and he’s not the only former Munster rugby star involved with a Tipperary team – as Ian Dowling is currently physio with the county’s senior footballers.

Ryan, meanwhile, believes that Tipp’s previous Munster championship outings against Cork and Limerick served as ideal preparation for the sweeper system they faced against Waterford on Sunday.

He would, however, have liked more time to prepare for the Gaelic Grounds demolition job but Tipp still won by a massive 21-point margin after producing a stunning second half performance.

Ryan explained: “When we got over Limerick three weeks ago, it was quite a quick turnaround to prepare for Waterford.

“We would have liked a little bit more time if you could write the script because this is a very good Waterford side, despite the scoreline.

“It doesn’t reflect the quality in that Waterford team at all.

“They are the best exponents of what we now call the sweeper system.

“But we have been well-practiced in terms of dealing with that because we come up against it time and time again.

“It was used in our first day out against Cork and particularly the last day against Limerick, when the sending-off brought us down to 14 players.

“That changed the way we had to play and we’ve quiet a lot of experience in trying to play against that kind of system.”

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