Munster Rugby head coach Johann Van Graan has extended his contract until June 2022. The news comes on the back of a number of contract extensions for players and comes as massive boost to the province.
The South African was the Springboks forwards coach when he decided to leave the role to replace Rassie Erasmus as Munster boss in 2017. His impact was felt almost instantly. Along with his coaching staff of former Munster players Jerry Flannery and Felix Jones as well JP Ferreira he guided the Red Army to a semi-final of the Pro 14 in 2018 as well as a Champions Cup semi-final. This year looks to be something similar. He will be preparing his side for the Champions Cup semi-final with the Saracens in two weeks time, while they currently sit second in Conference A of the Pro 14 with games against Benetton and Connacht to come in the final two rounds.
Speaking about his new contract the South African said, “I am very happy and grateful to be in this position, knowing that I can continue to work with this incredible group of people and play my part in shaping Munster’s future. He continued, “Moments and scenes such as last Saturday week in Edinburgh with the Munster supporters, players and management make for amazing memories, they can never be taken for granted. This is a special place, a special club to be part of and I look forward to continuing the journey together.” CEO of Munster Rugby Philip Quinn said “There was a significant amount of interest from other clubs so it was always going to be a challenge to retain the services of a coach of Johann’s calibre. However, Johann is fully committed to Munster Rugby and I believe it is a statement of intent from the province that we have finalised this deal.”
Munster will be looking to win the Champions Cup for the first time since the 2007/2008 season where they beat French side Toulouse.