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Duo set for rugby move after latest Limerick hurling title win

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

Irish rugby is set to benefit from the talent of two valued staff members who have helped Limerick to dominate the All-Ireland hurling scene in recent years as performance psychologist Caroline Currid has been linked with Johann van Graan’s Munster while strength and conditioning coach Mikey Kiely is set for a switch to Dan McFarland’s Ulster.

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Champions in 2018 after a 45-year wait, Limerick have since gone on to become the most envied side on the hurling scene in Ireland and last Sunday’s All-Ireland final demolition of Cork at Croke Park saw them crowned back-to-back champions for the first time ever as they added the 2021 title to the 2020 championship they clinched with last December’s win over Waterford. 

In the process, the Limerick team have become hugely admired for their mental resilience and their levels of fitness, improvements that will now reportedly see two of their staff switch into the professional rugby scene.  

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What sacrifice means to the Black Ferns

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What sacrifice means to the Black Ferns

Performance psychologist Currid isn’t a rugby novice as 2009 Lions skipper Paul O’Connell sought her help during the final years of his playing career and she has now been linked by the Limerick Leader newspaper to working with Munster in the coming season in a campaign that begins with a September 25 United Rugby Championship match at home to the South African Sharks. 

Before her involvement with the Limerick hurlers, Currid worked with the All-Ireland winning Tyrone footballers in 2008, the 2010 Tipperary hurlers and the Dublin footballers of 2011. 

Strength and conditioning expert Kiely, meanwhile, has already been working for McFarland’s Ulster, splitting his time in recent months between Belfast and Limerick. Kiely was involved in the July start of Ulster’s pre-season and it’s believed he will now work with them full-time after the successful completion of Limerick’s latest All-Ireland title campaign.  

Both Currid and Kiely were warmly praised for their efforts in the aftermath of last Sunday’s Limerick win. Skipper Declan Hannon said: “The one lady amongst all men Caroline Currid, what she has done for us the last five years is indescribable.” 

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Team boss John Kiely added: “We timed our return to training work and timed our push right and that is down to Mikey Kiely and Paul (Kinnerk) in terms of them setting the markers along the road of where we want to be at any given time – huge kudos to those guys because they got us right on the day that mattered most.”

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Turlough 5 hours ago
'Let them keep talking' - Mike Catt claps back over Bok remarks

“You want that – not hatred – but whatever it is that stirs it all up. It’s good.” Agree with this. If you can put a common motivating idea in all your players heads during a game it can produce a real Team perfromance. Erasmus is pretty expert at this. It is quite clear that the comments by Etzebeth, Allende and others were not coincidence and were actioned to create animoisty before the series in order to galvanise the South African mind set. While I understand it, I don’t like it. They result in unnessary vitriol between supporters and for what? I don’t think any of the SA players seriously believe any of these claims and with Ireland ignoring them Erasmus won’t get the escalation he seeks. The vitriol shown by some SA and indeed NZ supporters is extremely weird for NH supporters (OK, maybe England have felt it) but it just feels very odd over a sport. Ireland were more or less sh1t for the first 100 years of their rugby, they have improved significantly in the last 25 to be in a position around now (it may not last) to go into a match with the big guns with a real shot of winning. The reaction to this from some SH supporters has been bizarre with conspiracy theories of ‘Arrogance’ fueling abuse from supporters and even NZ players to Irish crowds during the world cup. I love International rugby and the comraderie between supporters. I genuinely dread and dislike the atmosphere around games with the southern giants. They take this very personally. NH teams: play them, try and beat them, enjoy the craic with their players and supporters and wish them well. SH teams wish them well and they call you arrogant in the press months later. Its just a matter of try and beat them and then good riddance til the next time.

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