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Leinster Rugby have added seven new players to their academy for the upcoming season – all of whom have played at U20 level for Ireland.
Lee Barron, Jack Boyle, Chris Cosgrave, Mark Hernan, Temi Lasisi, Ben Murphy and Rob Russell have all joined as Year One players.
Rob Russell was a Grand Slam winner with the national U20 side in 2019 while the other six have all played for the team in the last two campaigns.
Ben Murphy is the son of current Ireland U20 boss Richie Murphy.
Speaking at the announcement of the 2021/22 Academy squad, Leinster Rugby Head of Rugby Operations, Guy Easterby, said: “We are delighted, as a province, to announce our Academy intake for the season ahead.
The seven new additions will add considerably to the group that we already have within our Academy system and they should all take inspiration from the 15 Academy, pathway and age-grade players that represented our senior team in the PRO14 last season.
“It is also important, at this point, to congratulate the players who have been promoted from our Academy to join our senior squad for the coming season and wish them the very best of luck as they continue their careers with us.
“For our new Academy intake, this announcement is a hugely special moment and a significant step in their rugby journeys. We shouldn’t underestimate the commitment they have made as individuals to get to this point, it is the culmination of a huge amount of hard work and dedication.
“The reality is though that their next challenge starts now and we look forward to doing everything we can to help these young men realise their ambitions on the pitch and continue to grow as people off the pitch.”
He added: “We cannot let today pass without also acknowledging the significant roles that their families, clubs and schools have played in their journeys so far.
“They should all be very proud of the part they have played in supporting them and we, as a province, understand the importance of that continued connection as the players progress through their development within the Leinster system.
“Finally, it is also important to acknowledge the work done on the ground throughout the province by our own domestic rugby staff and by all our staff in the Ken Wall Centre Of Excellence in Energia Park.
“Without the support of all these stakeholders, none of these players would be where they are today. Everyone at Leinster Rugby wish Jack, Lee, Chris, Mark, Temi, Ben and Rob every success.”
LEINSTER RUGBY – SENIOR CONTRACTS 2021/22:
- Thomas Clarkson (10 caps)
- David Hawkshaw (8 caps)
- Michael Milne (16 caps)
LEINSTER RUGBY ACADEMY – YEAR THREE 2021/22:
- Brian Deeny
- Cormac Foley (1 cap)
- Martin Moloney (1 cap)
- Charlie Ryan
- Liam Turner (6 caps)
LEINSTER RUGBY ACADEMY – YEAR TWO 2021/22:
- Niall Comerford
- Marcus Hanan (2 caps)
- Joe McCarthy
- John McKee
- Jamie Osborne (6 caps)
- Sean O’Brien (2 caps)
- Max O’Reilly (7 caps)
- Andrew Smith (2 caps)
- Alex Soroka (2 caps)
LEINSTER RUGBY ACADEMY – YEAR ONE 2021/22:
- Jack Boyle
- Lee Barron
- Chris Cosgrave
- Mark Hernan
- Temi Lasisi
- Ben Murphy
- Rob Russell