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Munster and IRFU confirm a post-World Cup departure for Paul O'Connell

The second row will be released from his current contract once Ireland’s involvement in the World Cup is finished.

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

IRELAND CAPTAIN PAUL O’Connell has been allowed cut his contract with the IRFU short, the Union and his province confirmed today.

The Munster lock will retire from international rugby once Ireland’s involvement in this year’s Rugby World Cup comes to an end.

The legendary second row has been a high profile target of European Champions Toulon for some time, and there will now be no binding contract preventing him from joining the Top14 club.

The statement states: “Paul, who is currently contracted until June 2016, has requested an early release from contract and both the IRFU and Munster Rugby have acceded to the request given Paul’s exceptional contribution to the sport.”

O’Connell played the last of his 178 appearances for Munster in Saturday’s Pro12 final defeat to Glasgow. Already a centurion for his country, O’Connell’s last home fixture in Ireland will come on 29 August for the World Cup warm-up meeting with Wales.

He will hope to increase his caps haul from his current 101 with a possible 11 Tests to come between now and the World Cup final on 31 October.

A tribute to Munster legend Paul O’Connell in 38 epic pictures

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Sean Farrell

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