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de Allende confirms he is quitting Munster, but Bath not on radar

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

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Springboks World Cup winner Damian de Allende has confirmed that he will be leaving Munster at the end of the current season after the Irish province announced earlier this year they have signed ex-All Blacks midfielder Malakai Fekitoa for the 2022/23 season.

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The 30-year-old from Cape Town told Irish media on Tuesday that he will leave in a few months but he isn’t yet clear which club he will be joining.

What de Allende did confirm was that he won’t be moving elsewhere in Europe which means he won’t be following Johann van Graan, the former Springboks assistant, to Bath when the current Munster head coach switches to the Gallagher Premiership for next season.

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Chris Ashton | Rugby Roots
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Chris Ashton | Rugby Roots

Having played in Japan prior to joining Munster in 2020, de Allende has been linked with a return to the Top League but rumours of a switch home to South Africa have grown legs more recently. “I’m not staying, but it hasn’t been confirmed where I’m going,” revealed the Springboks midfielder.

“I’m not staying in Europe, so I’m definitely not going to Bath, I haven’t spoken to anyone at Bath. I will not be staying in Europe as of the end of the season, which is unfortunate. But I’m looking forward to ending the season on a high. I really want to leave Munster with great memories I have made already, but some silverware as well.”

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A veteran of seven Super Rugby campaigns with the Stormers, de Allende played for the Panasonic Wildcats after he decided to stay on in Japan following the 2019 World Cup. He is now nearing his second – and last – season at Munster and very much remains part of the Springboks’ plans as they look to successfully defend their World Cup title at the next finals in France next year.

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De Allende has played 31 times with Munster and is preparing for their URC derby this Saturday in Limerick versus Leinster before their two-legged round of 16 Heineken Champions Cup showdown with Exeter.

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