Munster head coach Johann van Graan has revealed he has turned down a contract extension and will leave the province in June 2022.
The South African succeeded Rassie Erasmus as head coach in November 2017, but won't be taking up the offer to stay.
He has issued the following statement:
“While I was at advanced stages in the contract process earlier this year, I took a step back and reconsidered my options, prioritising what’s best for my family, myself, and Munster Rugby.
“My family and I settled well into life here, this is our home, and in an ideal world we would love to continue living in Limerick, but I’ve been looking at the bigger picture.
“After arriving during the 2017/18 season, I am now into my fifth season with this group and in putting Munster first I believe it’s the right decision for me to call time on my contribution and step away at the end of this season.
“While we have achieved so much together, and still have over six months of the season remaining, I wanted any uncertainty about my future addressed as early as possible.
“Working with this coaching team, staff, and players we are always striving to do our best for Munster Rugby, and nothing will change on that front.
“It has been an incredible journey and I’m hugely proud of this group for everything we have done to-date knowing there is so much more to come as we move towards the business end of the season.”
Munster will be undergoing significant change in terms of their coaching structure as backs coach Stephen Larkham recently announced he was quitting at the end of the current campaign.
CEO Ian Flanagan says van Graan will be missed.
“We will be disappointed to see Johann go at the end of the season, he will be widely missed after forming such close relationships across the organisation.
“Johann has been a valued addition to the province and integral to all the successes we have achieved over the past four years.
“His hands-on approach and tireless work ethic have ensured the structures are well in place for continued success and we know he will continue to deliver on all fronts for the remainder of the season.
“For now, we are working closely with the IRFU in looking to identify suitable replacements with the confirmed departures of both Johann and Steve (Stephen Larkham) next summer.”
Under van Graan, Munster have reached two Champions Cup semi finals, but the province are without a trophy in a decade.
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