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Billy Burns poised to stay on in Ireland after Ulster exit – report

By Liam Heagney
Ulster's Billy Burns (Photo by Matt Impey/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

URC champions Munster are reportedly set to sign Billy Burns from Ulster to offset the impending loss of Joey Carbery to France in 2024/25. The Irish province have had issues at out-half in recent times following what was initially a logjam in the position.

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It was 2021 when JJ Hanrahan, who is now at Connacht, exited for Clermont and the year after when Jake Flannery, another former Ireland U20s No10, felt his career was best served by switching to Ulster.

Ben Healy also departed, joining Edinburgh this season after he made the breakthrough at international level with Scotland, and the decision by Carbery to join Bordeaux next term in the Top 14 has left Munster looking decidedly thin on resources, especially Jack Crowley set to become more involved with Andy Farrell’s Ireland in the wake of Johnny Sexton’s retirement.

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Rather than seek out a solution from abroad, it appears Munster could bolster their out-half cover by signing Burns, who isn’t having his contract renewed by Ulster.

He joined the northern province in 2018, going on to be capped at Test level by Farrell, but he hasn’t played internationally since his seventh appearance, the 2021 Summer Series win over Japan in Dublin.

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An Irish Times report read: “Billy Burns is being lined up by Munster as a potential signing for next season in the light of Joey Carbery’s decision to move on from the province next summer and join Bordeaux.

“The 29-year-old Burns is not having his contract renewed by Ulster and The Irish Times understands that the out-half and Munster have undertaken negotiations with a view to him relocating south, which looks likely…

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“Burns is in his sixth season as Ulster’s first-choice out-half, having joined them in July 2018 following the retirement of Ian Humphreys, the termination of Paddy Jackson’s contract and the conclusion of Christian Lealiifano’s loan deal.”

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AOK 136 days ago

How much are Munster regretting losing Ben Healy now?!

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