New Munster head coach Johann van Graan joined up with the squad this week ahead of Sunday’s Pro 14 clash with Zebre.
The South African will not be in charge for the match as he attempts to make a smooth transition into his new role. Forwards coach Jerry Flannery will be one of the members of the coaching ticket overseeing the tie, he says that this will ensure that van Graan has the chance to experience the build up to the game from a distance before he takes over.
“From when it was announced that Rassie and Jacques were leaving, we knew that this period was coming up, so we’ve been preparing for this from the start and we’re trying to make the transition as easy as possible.”
“Even for Johann coming in, he came in on Sunday and myself and Felix met with him, we’re probably fortunate having two weeks to prepare for this Zebre game but we put an awful lot of work into last week’s training, so it meant that for Johann to come in now he can basically sit back and take a big picture view on it and just see how the week runs, see how we do things.
“He’d already been in here and had look at how we worked when Rassie and Jacques were here so for him to come in now he’s just taking an overview and seeing how things and seeing if there’s processes we can improve and see what we do well.”
Flannery has been impressed by what he’s heard about the incoming head coach and is excited at the prospect of working with van Graan going forward.
“I’m getting to know the guy but from any of the coaches that I’ve spoken to before Johann had come here, they were all very excited, and it made me very excited because he’s technically such a good coach and any of the Bok’s players speak highly of him.
“For me as a forward’s coach I’ll be excited to bounce ideas off him. I just came down from a meeting there and sometimes it’s good to have people come from a different rugby experience up to this point and they see different pictures to what you see. I’m looking forward to Johan getting in there.
“This guy is a really driven guy, he’s actually given up a job coaching his own country, a dream job for most guys in South Africa, to come over here to become a head coach. He’s moving his family over here, it’s a big move, I know he’s going to work his ass off.”
WATCH: Click here to see Johann van Graan giving his first interview to Munster Rugby during the week.