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Promising Glenstal Abbey out-half among Munster's academy recruits for 2018/19

Ben Healy was the standout performer in the Munster Senior Schools Cup last year.

ONE OF THE stars of last year’s Munster Senior Schools Cup competition has been handed a place in the province’s academy for the 2018/19 season as one of eight first year recruits.

Ben Healy Ben Healy impressed for Glenstal Abbey last year. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Out-half Ben Healy guided Glenstal Abbey to a first-ever Munster schools title with a one-point victory over CBC Cork at Musgrave Park in March, following a succession of outstanding individual performances.

His talent has been earmarked for a number of years and Munster have wasted little time in getting him into their system after he recently completed the Leaving Certificate.

Joining Healy in first year are four members of the Ireland squad from last month’s World Rugby U20 Championship, with one of them — back row Jack Daly — coming through the province’s pathway programme.

Hookers Diarmuid Barron and Eoghan Clarke (who came up through the Leinster schools system with CBC Monkstown), as well as prop James French, are rewarded for their performances for Ireland U20s, while Thomas Ahern, Sean French and Jonathan Wren complete the first year roster.

Today’s announcement follows Munster’s decision to release seven players from its academy programme at the back-end of last season.

Calvin Nash, Liam O’Connor, and Fineen Wycherley have all been promoted to senior contracts ahead of the 2018/19 campaign.

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Munster academy 2018/19:

Year 3: Gavin Coombes (Backrow/Young Munster), Shane Daly (Centre/Cork Con), Sean O’Connor (Lock/Garryowen).

Year 2: Craig Casey (Scrumhalf/Shannon), Liam Coombes (Back three/Garryowen), Keynon Knox (Prop/UL Bohs), James McCarthy (Fullback/UL Bohs), Alex McHenry (Centre/Cork Con), Matt More (Centre/Garryowen), Jack O’Sullivan (Back row/UCC), Jack Stafford (Scrumhalf/Shannon), Alan Tynan (Full-back/Young Munster).

Year 1: Thomas Ahern (Lock/Waterpark), Diarmuid Barron (Hooker/Garryowen), Jack Daly (Back-row/Garryowen), Ben Healy (Out-half/Glenstal), James French (Prop/UCC), Sean French (Centre/PBC), Eoghan Clarke (Hooker/Wanderers), Jonathan Wren (Back three/PBC).

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